The Nocona girls played their final non-district game at home on Tuesday with a drubbing of Gainesville.
The Lady Indians easily beat the Lady Leopards 67-26.
The smaller Nocona team eventually started to run Gainesville out of the gym midway through the first quarter. The Lady Leopards were bigger than the Lady Indians and early on used it to keep pace with offensive rebounds.
Nocona led 8-6 with four minutes left to play in the quarter when the Lady Indians defense came alive and started forcing steals on the ball and off the ball.
Nocona pushed the ball in transition and in just two minutes went on a 9-2 run to go up 17-8. The Lady Indians finished the quarter strong with six more points to go up double-digits 23-8 heading into the second quarter.
Nocona continued to force turnovers against the lose ball handlers from Gainesville, clogging the lane and daring the Lady Leopards to shoot.
Once the rhythm of pushing the ball against a lack transition defense became the preferred strategy, the Lady Indians kept it up even as more of the bench got put on the court. Nocona led 38-16 at halftime.
The Lady Indians spent a lot of the second half resting their starters as getting varsity experience to every available player with the lead intact. Gainesville was kept frustrated the pressure on the ball forced turnovers which continued to lead to good offensive chances in transition.
There was no worry about any lulls that allowed the Lady Leopards to come back as Nocona’s lead grew to 56-20 heading into the fourth quarter.
The final quarter was the slowest paced of the whole game as the teams played until the final whistle with the outcome already known.
A fun moment happened when Laramie Hayes, in her second game back from injury, hit an open three-point shot that got the whole bench jumping.
The Lady Indians would go on to win 67-26.
Averee Kleinhans led the team with 17 points in limited playing time. Raylee Sparkman had a great game off the bench scoring 15 points.
Nocona started district on Friday. The Lady Indians home district opener will start at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 14 against Henrietta.
To read the full story, pick up a copy of the weekend edition of the Bowie News.