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Balanced scoring, defense lead FHS girls to 2-0 record

Mixing zone and man-to-man defenses, the Farragut Lady Admirals held Lenoir City to 13 second-half points and improved its record to 2-0.

Pulling away late, the extremely young FHS girls claimed a 49-33 win in the team’s home opener last Thursday. An impressive 61-56 win at Cleveland came two days before.

In addition, an unlikely offensive catalyst has emerged in both games.

FHS 49 LCHS 33

“I thought we played tremendous defense,” FHS head coach Mike Driver said. “I think that was the difference in the game. I told the girls that I though they did an exceptional job on the defensive end.”

Offensively, “we made some big shots from the outside late in the game,” Driver said. “That was very important.”

Huge three-point baskets from sophomore Rachel Draper and junior Ashley Tipton turned a 28-26 lead into a 34-26 lead late in the third quarter. The Lady Panthers would get no closer in the final frame.

“It was a very physical game throughout the first and second half,” Driver said. “We didn’t back down when it got a little aggressive. We became aggressive also.”

Tipton, who was never considered a scoring threat as a sophomore reserve on last season’s FHS team, has led Farragut in scoring both games. Her 13 points led the way Thursday, followed by Natalie Munday with 11 before she fouled out for the second time in as many games — this time with 3:43 left in the fourth quarter.

Sophomore wing Beth Raby and Draper each had nine. Haley Williams scored three, with Catelyn Dake and Amy Josephson each adding two.


“We won a big game down there,” Driver said of Farragut’s 61-56 season opening win at Cleveland Nov. 18. “That was over a team that is extremely talented down there.”

Five unanswered points late in the game sealed the victory.

Tipton’s 13 second-half points were huge. “They put the pressure on, but she broke the press, she would drive and either take the pull-up jumper or dump it off to another wing,” Driver said. “Ashley was able to dribble the ball downcourt and hit either Draper or Beth Raby for some lay-ups or wide open shots on the wing.

“What I thought was big for the girls is that we made that run with Natalie on the bench after fouling out,” Driver added. “She’s got to watch herself, we’ve got to have her in the game.” But while she was in, Munday led FHS in scoring with 17. Raby added 12.

Point guard play has shined.

“Amy’s done a good job at the point, also,” Driver said. “So far I’ve been pleasantly surprised by Amy and Ashley at point guard.”

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