Slow Start Dooms Lady Griffins

Tahalier Collier (4) battles for the rebound. (Photo/DeAnna Robinson)

Tahalier Collier (4) battles for the rebound. (Photo/DeAnna Robinson)

COLUMBIA (Jan. 25, 2017) – Another slow start hampered the Fairfield Central girls’ basketball team, and it likely kept the Griffins from getting a win over Columbia.

The Lady Griffins played hard after going down 12-4 early in the game, but the Capitals held them off 40-36 Tuesday night at Columbia High.

“I felt like we had a slow start again,” Fairfield Central head coach Amelia Miller said. “We didn’t shoot the ball well tonight, but we fought back and did what we were supposed to do. We’ve just got to continue to get better and grow.”

After Columbia (6-4, 2-1) opened with a 12-4 advantage, Fairfield Central (5-11, 3-2) closed out the first quarter trailing 14-7. The Lady Griffins opened up the second quarter with a 7-2 run that got them to within two points of the Capitals at the 3-minute mark.

Columbia held Fairfield Central back in the final minutes though and went into the locker room leading 21-17 at the half.

Over the course of the third quarter, the Lady Griffins made their move. Tamesha Woodard’s foul shot at the 5:15 mark gave Fairfield Central a 24-23 lead, its first of the game.

For the next three minutes the lead changed hands four times. A Jameka Henderson 3-pointer gave the Griffins a 29-27 lead, but Shateria Dorsey’s two foul shots at the 2:14 mark evened the score at 29 and was the last of the scoring of the third quarter.

Fairfield Central and Columbia continued exchanging leads down the stretch, but the Capitals stayed ahead of the Griffins with foul shots.

Free-throw shooters were Columbia’s entire offense for the last five minutes of the game. The Capitals were 8-for-14 from the charity stripe in that time, which was enough to hold off the Griffins.

Another 3-pointer from Henderson with 36 seconds left made it 38-36 Columbia, but the Griffins couldn’t manage another basket.

Imani Copeland led the Capitals with 18 points. Dorsey added 15 and had 11 rebounds.

“Number 20 for Columbia (Dorsey) had some good boards on us,” Miller said. “She handled business down low.”

Fairfield Central plays at Camden Friday.

Columbia 41, Fairfield Central 36

FCHS: 7-10-12-7 – 36

CH: 14-7-8-12 – 41

Fairfield Central

Jameka Henderson 11, Woodard 8, Collier 6, Gray 5, Boyd 3, Sampson 3.

Columbia

Imani Copeland 18, Shateria Dorsey 15, Steadman 3, Miller 3, Williams 2.