By Thomas Sellers Jr.
Arriving to Millington with a 3-3 record, Collierville Lady Dragons Head Coach Anthony Hall was looking for a spark for his team’s confidence.
The Lady Dragons were able to take a step in the right direction toward overall team chemistry using pressure defense on the host Millington Lady Trojans. Collierville left the William Osteen Gymnasium last Tuesday owners of a 69-9 victory.
“We haven’t played our best at all,” Hall acknowledged. “We’ve not been good like we can, like I think we can. I think we can compete for a district title to be honest with you. And I just haven’t seen that come out of us yet. Hopefully as we get through the holidays, we can get just a little bit better. Not a whole lot better, I just hoping we can get a little bit better every game. As long as we can do that, we can be there in the end.”
The goal entering the Millington game was to continue his blend of mixing seniors like Jada Taylor with younger players like freshman Lauren Robinson to make a run in districts in January and February.
“We got a chance to get some buckets in transition,” he noted. “Some of our girls who had kind of been struggling at scoring saw the ball go in tonight. They build up some confidence. Jada Taylor finally got scoring. She had 15 points tonight. Lauren Taylor has been a steady person for us. She’s been doing well.
“But it was also good to see Destiny Todd score some points as well,” Hall continued. “We’re a young team. We do have six seniors but at the same time we play a lot of younger players. It’s kind of good to see the ball go in for some of them.”
Freshmen like Todd and Robinson made baskets throughout the night. The Lady Dragon that got Collierville rolling in the first half was Jada Taylor.
The senior guard hit jumper and a pair of three-pointer to help Collierville jump out 10-0 in the first quarter. Then teammates like Anandi Farrell-Rousseau, Gabrielle Henderson and Destiney Amaefula contributed to the offensive output.
The Lady Dragons used full-court pressure in the first quarter to limit Millington shot opportunities. In the second quarter, Hall employed his players to use aggressive man-to-man, on-the-ball defense. Collierville held the Lady Trojans to a pair of free throws in the second quarter.
Hall said having his players see the things he has been preaching work will hopefully encourage them to reach their full potential as district approaches.
“Two things I really want to see get better, we’ve got to guard better,” he said. “And we’ve also been struggling turning that ball over on offense. We’ve got to value that ball so much more. We’ve got to take every possession as a valuable possession. We’ve got to value that ball a whole lot more.
“I want to see that and I want to see us become a much better defensive team,” Hall concluded. “If we do that we’ll be OK. We have to mature and if we do that our chemistry will get better.”
By Thomas Sellers Jr.