Slow start costs Lady ‘Canes against Sevier County

Morristown East’s Sable Burnside scores off a steal against Sevier County Tuesday.

SEVIERVILLE — Morristown East’s girls missed their first dozen shots from the floor in their Inter Mountain Conference opener Tuesday night. Host Sevier County rolled to a 52-28 victory.

The Bearettes led 16-1 after the first quarter and stretched the margin to 20-1 as East went the first 13:06 without a basket.

It was the second win in five games for Sevier County while East slipped to 4-3 on the season.

Mackenna Loveday gunned in 17 points to lead the Bearettes. Emma Huskey chipped in nine.

Sable Burnside scored 11 for the Lady Hurricanes with Lindsey Winstead adding seven.

East coach Michael Potts said, “When you miss as many shots as we did at the start, you’re going to be in trouble. What made it so bad is that several of those were easy shots. It wasn’t like we were forcing bad shots or something.

“You know, when you’re not doing very well on one end and you turn right back around and don’t do very well on the other end, then the other team is gaining confidence and everything,” he added. “We just didn’t play very well tonight.”

Potts went on to say, “We didn’t have a very good night and when you get off to a start like we did, it’s really hard to come back.”

The Lady Hurricanes fought back into it briefly after Burnside finally hit a basket. Devasia Kyle followed with a three and then Burnside scored again to chop the deficit down to 20-8. But Natali Shultz buried a three in the final seconds of the half and the Bearettes led by 15 at the break.

East got a basket from Abby Wright, a free throw from Burnside and a three from Winstead to pull within 23-14 two minutes into the third stanza. But that was as close as the Lady ‘Canes would get.

Loveday hit four straight free throws, Amanda Clabo fired in a three and Huskey put in a layup and it was an 18-point game.

East had another short rally as Winstead connected on her second three and Burnside scored two straight baskets to get it down to 11 with 1:37 left in the third.

But Huskey scored the final five of the third quarter and the winners got a bucket from Shilah Whaley and a three from Shelby Smith to start the fourth to lead by 21. East got no closer than 17 after that.

East hit only 10-of-32 from the floor for 31.3 percent including 3-of-15 three-point attempts. The winners weren’t much better at 19-of-49 for 38.8 percent but made 7-of-18 threes.

Hailey Williams had six rebounds as Sevier had a 33-29 backboard advantage. Burnside led the Lady ‘Canes with six.

In the first quarter, Huskey hit the first basket before Clabo tossed in a pair of triples. Clabo and Loveday added baskets and it was 12-0 when Wright hit the first of two free throws to get East on the scoreboard with 1:10 left in the quarter.

Williams had a pair of baskets before the quarter was over and then hit a free throw to start the second. Whaley and Emily Fowler added baskets before Burnside broke the East draught.