BAKER — Lily Phillips scored 13 points to lead a trio of Baker girls basketball players in double figures Thursday as the Gators beat Laurel Hill 42-23.
Taylor Martin and Natalie Booker each scored 11 points to join Phillips in double figures for the Gators as they picked up their second win of the season.
“I was real pleased with how we played,” Baker coach James Kerrell said. “We did a better job of handling and taking care of the ball. I feel like we did a good job on the boards.
“Laurel Hill has got some really good players. Jhanea (Griffin) is pretty powerful inside and we wanted to contain her a little bit.”
The Gators (2-9) were able to contain Griffin, holding her to seven points.
An early basket by Booker and a 3-pointer by Phillips gave the Gators a 5-0 lead at the 5:38 mark in the first quarter.
Griffin scored the first Hobo basket with 4:15 left in the first. The second 3-pointer by Phillips made it 8-2 and Laurel Hill was never closer than four points to the Gators the rest of the way.
Baker led 8-4 at the end of the first quarter, but the Gators were just getting cranked up.
Booker scored on a 3-point play 32 seconds into the second quarter. Martin then caught fire, scoring eight of her 11 points in a span of less than three minutes.
Only a basket by Laurel Hill’s Diamond Griffith interrupted Martin’s scoring spree.
Ashley Black took over for Baker late in the quarter, scoring all six of her points.
“Taylor Martin had a good shooting game tonight,” Kerrell said. “I was pleased with how she played.
“I was pleased with how Lily shot the ball and how well Taylor and Ashley played inside.”
The Gators led 25-9 at the half and were well on their way to the win.
The Hoboes (2-12) managed to trim a point off the Gator lead in the third quarter, but Baker still led by 15 heading into the fourth quarter.
Ty D’Andrade scored all seven of Laurel Hill’s points in the fourth quarter to finish with a team high nine points.
As was the case most of the game, Phillips, Booker and Martin led the way for Baker in the fourth as the Gators cruised to the win.
The Hoboes were playing without starters Bridget Zessin and Grace Reese, but Laurel Hill coach Scott Varnum refused to use that as an excuse.
“They (the Gators) played really hard,” he said. “They outworked us at times.
“No excuses, they outplayed us. They shot it really well and we didn’t. We had open looks and the shots didn’t fall.”
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.