Photo: Zaria Glover totaled 10 points and nine rebounds in the Lady Rangers’ close loss to Hinds on Friday afternoon. (MaKenzi Curtis/nwccrangers.com)
By Brian Lentz, NWCC Sports Information Director
Northwest worked through shooting woes and other obstacles throughout Friday afternoon’s contest against Hinds, but the Lady Rangers still came up on the losing end, dropping a close 54-49 decision to the Lady Bulldogs.
Northwest finished just 20 percent from the floor (13-66) and 11 percent from three-point range (2-19), but the Lady Rangers went 78 percent from the free throw line. By comparison, Hinds shot 33 percent overall and 40 percent from beyond the arc.
Hinds started off hot, taking a 7-0 advantage through the first four minutes of play. A three-pointer by freshman Rebekah Pilcher broke the ice for Northwest, but the Lady Bulldogs hit two more baskets to stretch their lead to eight points, the largest deficit of the game for either team.
Trailing 11-3, the Lady Rangers managed to close the gap to four by the end of the first quarter and the game remained close the rest of the way. Northwest was able to tie the contest at 18 apiece just before the halftime break, but Hinds still took a narrow 21-19 lead into halftime.
Alexus Lindsey opened the second half with a pair of free throws that tied the game once again, but a layup from Adja Bryant and a three-pointer from Jayiah Ransom pushed the Lady Bulldogs’ lead back to five. Northwest would tie the game up twice over the final 1:30 of the third period, but another three-pointer from Ransom with 22 seconds left pushed Hinds to a 34-31 lead.
Both teams continued the back-and-forth battle over the span of the fourth quarter, but Hinds seemingly stayed one step ahead. After falling behind by six with 2:33 to go, the Lady Rangers used a 7-0 run to rally back and take a 48-47 advantage with 1:31 remaining in regulation.
However, that would be the first and only lead for Northwest, as Hinds countered with a Destiny Brown three-point bucket with 33 seconds left. Kae’la Mitchell then split her two free throws on the other end of the floor, while the Lady Bulldogs closed out the game with four free throws.
Zaria Glover led all Northwest scorers with 10 points and nine rebounds, coming up just short of a double-double. Mitchell earned nine points to go with four rebounds and four steals, while Kennidi Dean tallied nine points off the bench.
Ransom and Brown led the Lady Bulldogs in scoring, earning 15 and 13 points, respectively. Ransom also totaled seven rebounds and Deondrea Young led the team with nine rebounds off the bench.
With the loss, Northwest fell to 6-12 overall, as the losing streak extended to eight games. The Lady Rangers are also 1-8 in conference play, while Hinds improved to 3-14 on the season and 2-6 in the MACCC.
Northwest will now set its sights on Monday evening’s road contest at Itawamba. The Lady Indians (9-8, 1-7 MACCC) are coming off a 73-47 road loss at Mississippi Gulf Coast.