Munford beats Talladega, 57-45
by LaVonte Young
Jan 20, 2014 | 1296 views |  0 comments | 31 31 recommendations | email to a friend | print
SYLACAUGA- Second seed Munford used a third quarter run to defeat seventh seed Talladega, 57-45 in the first round of the 2014 Talladega County Basketball Tournament at Sylacauga High School on Monday.

Munford advance to the semifinals and they will play the winner between Childersburg/Sylacauga on Thursday.

“The girls played great,” Munford head coach Anne Hopkins said. “Talladega has gotten a lot better since the first of the year. Coach Keith has done a good job with them. We knew that we had to play well to win this game, so I am proud of the girls and the effort that they gave.”

The Lady Lions used a 14-3 run in the third quarter to break open a game that was knotted at 23-23 at halftime. Ra’Aunna Caldwell scored five quick points in the third quarter including a layup to give Munford a 31-27 lead with 3:23 left in the quarter. The senior guard then stole the ball and took it in for a layup to make it 33-27. Te’Asia Cunningham’s put back made it 36-29. Munford took a 38-30 lead into the fourth quarter.

“We didn’t play great in the first half defensively, so we wanted to focus on containing penetration and also win the battle on the boards,” Hopkins said. “I figured if we won the battle on the boards we will be able to win the game.”

Caldwell scored eight of her game high 18 points in the final period. Her floater to start the quarter pushed Munford lead to 40-30. Her layup with five minutes left in the game increased their lead back to double digits, 45-35.

Gabrieal Johnson scored nine of her 18 points in the fourth quarter. She hit a jumper to cut the Munford lead to 49-41, but that’s as close as they would get.

Kierra Groce scored four straight points to make it 53-41. Caldwell sealed the victory with a layup to make it 57-45.

Munford’s Big Three accounted for 42 points in their win over Talladega. Caldwell scored 18 points for Munford. Kedra Curtis scored 14 points for Munford, while Groce chipped in with 10 points.

“They play so well together,” Hopkins said. “They are so unselfish and to be able to have so much scoring it helps against teams because they can’t just stop one of us.”