Lady Cougars Capture WHC Regular Season Title 2-10-14

Lady Cougars Capture WHC Regular Season Title
By David Grindstaff
The final regular season home game for the Heritage Lady Cougar seniors couldn’t have been much better Friday night before a packed house in Burnsville.
The top-rated Lady Cougars (17-2, 11-0) beat the Avery Vikings 59-34 and captured their second straight conference championship in the process.
The Lady Cougars had three players to score in double figures and Heritage pulled away in the second half, outscoring the Lady Vikings 25-8 in the fourth quarter.
Junior post Destiny Elkins had a fantastic night with 28 points, with 21 of those points coming in a dominating second half performance.
 Senior Nyssa Freeman had 11 points (three 3’s) as did junior Kendyl Neill (one 3-pointer) as the Lady Cougars nailed a couple of treys in the third quarter and opened up the tight zone that Avery County had employed in the first half.
Avery County hung around for the best part of three quarters but the Heritage pressure defense opened up some shots in the lane for the Cougars. Heritage led 18-10 at the intermission and ran the lead to 34-26 going into the 4th quarter
Avery had no player score more than eight points, Kylie Polsgrove.
 The Lady Cougars opened up the week with an outstanding defensive effort in a 51-19 road win over Owen on Monday night.
Heritage held the Warlassies to just two points in both the first and third quarters to open each half with a run that quickly put the game out of reach for Owen.
Heritage, which won the battle on the boards 42-25, got the victory in spite of hitting only one of ten three point shots and 10 of 20 free throws.
Destiny Elkins scored 15 points on 6 of 9 shooting from the field while grabbing 7 rebounds. Hailey Crane pulled down 8 rebounds to lead the team on the glass. She also scored 9 points in the post. Abby Bailey and Kendyl Neill chipped in eight points each for the Lady Cougars in the 32 point win.
Lady Cougar arch rival Mitchell played host to Heritage on Tuesday night and the two old rivals put on a good show for the big crowd in Ledger as Heritage jumped to a 12-3 lead after the first eight minutes but the game was not out of the Lady Mountaineer’s reach until the 4th quarter. Heritage rattled off twenty 4th quarter points while Mitchell could manage only eight in the final stanza of the 41-21 WHC loss.
The Lady Cougars missed 13 free throws or the margin of victory could have been much bigger.
Destiny Elkins led the Lady Cougars with 20 points and 6 rebounds while Nyssa Freeman added 8 points and four assist and Abby Bailey contributed 5 points, 4 rebounds and 3 steals to the win over Mitchell (3-20, 2-10) who was paced by the 10 point 6 rebound performance of Sarah Robinson.
With a win over Madison on Tuesday in Marshall the Lady Cougars can finish the regular season unbeaten in league play.


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