Lady Tigers notch first win of season

COVINGTON - A double-double by Alcovy's Tiffany Moody helped give the Lady Tigers something they hadn't felt all season - the thrill of victory.

The Lady Tigers (1-13 overall, 1-2 in Region 8-AAAA South) got their first win of the season beating Eastside 40-35, while the Alcovy boys (5-8, 1-2) got their first Region 8-AAAA South win with a 62-46 win over the host Eagles (9-9, 1-2) on Tuesday night.

The Lady Tigers started out slowly in the first quarter, turning the ball over eight times and scoring only five points, all from Lisa Kossally.

While Alcovy stopped itself a lot with turnovers in the first quarter, the Lady Eagles (6-12, 0-3) suffered the same curse in the second period. Eastside stopped any momentum it had with eight turnovers. As a result, Alcovy stayed in the game as the teams finished the first half with Eastside leading 15-11.

"I told them at halftime, 'Here you are a team that scores 56 points against Salem and loses by six points to Cedar Grove within seven days,'" Alcovy coach Suzanne Smith said. "The girls stayed with it and they didn't panic, which I was afraid would happen. They proved to me that they wanted to win."

Eastside finished the third quarter with a 26-21 lead as Ashley Burtts accounted for 14 of Eastside's total points in the first three periods. She finished with a game-high 17 points.

In the fourth quarter, it took Alcovy 2:28 to erase its deficit when Moody, who had 14 points and 13 rebounds, hit a free throw to take a 27-26 lead.

Eastside grabbed the lead on the next possession, but Moody and Alex Tucker gave the Lady Tigers the lead again.

"I thought a lot of missed layups hurt us, especially in the first half," Eastside coach Jason Grooms said. "We're going to have turnovers, but I'm more disappointed in not making shots that we're capable of making. I feel like we we're getting pushed around. We need to step our physicality up a couple of notches."

The Lady Eagles tied the game at 33, but Alcovy was able to outscore the Lady Eagles 7-2 in the final two minutes.

"When they tied it, I thought we were going to go in the tank and that was going to be that," Smith said. "But I called a timeout, and I said look we've got to do what we need to do and that's pull the boards down and make shots that count."

Kossally chipped in 11 points for the Lady Tigers.

Alcovy boys 62, Eastside boys 46

Eastside grabbed a 16-14 first quarter lead by doing what it does best: controlling the tempo of the game. Although the Eagles never had more than a two-point lead, they tried to make Alcovy play their game with fast breaks and a big dunk.

However, the Tigers shifted their defense, slowing down Eastside in the second quarter.

Alcovy held the Eagles' normally explosive offense to six points while scoring 18 of their own to take a 32-22 halftime lead.

"They like to put a lot of pressure on you and push the ball up the floor. We wanted to slow it down and put our own pressure on and get some turnovers," Alcovy coach Eugene Brown said. "Our players executed our game plan pretty well. We wanted to keep the big guys out of the paint and force some jump shots and we had that happen for us."

While the Tigers were keeping the Eagles flat and on their heels, Worrel Clahar turned up the heat.

Clahar scored 10 points in the third period as Alcovy took a 46-32 advantage to start the final eight minutes. He led all scorers with 28 points.

"He's a beast. What can I tell you? During this slump we've been in he's been carrying the load trying to do everything in his power to get us out of it," Brown said. "The guys all stepped up and played well to complement what he did. He's our leader and we go as he goes."

The Tigers did not let up on the pressure as they kept Eastside off balance to snap a four-game losing streak.

Cody Edwards joined Clahar in double-digit scoring with 12 points. Pacing the Eagles were Cameron Robinson (11) and Gabe Mathis (10).

Manny Fils can be reached at manny.fils@newtoncitizen.com.