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Rockdale girls holds off Alcovy

Rockdale didn’t shoot the ball particularly well from the field Tuesday against Alcovy, so the Bulldogs instead polished off a league win from the free throw line.

The Bulldogs erased a late-third quarter deficit and hit 8 of 9 free throws in the fourth quarter of a 48-41 victory in Region 2-AAAAAA play at Stroud Gymnasium.

Alcovy led 34-33 heading into the final period and the game was tied at 36-36 40 seconds in. But Brianna Patton had a conventional three-point play and a 3-pointer, part of a game-high 14 points, to put Rockdale up for good at 39-36 with 6 1/2 minutes to play.

It was 43-36 following a pair of 2-for-2 trips to the line by Shebreta Alexander and Tamera Sanders, then Alcovy got as close as 43-39 on Kiara Bagby’s three with 2:52 to go.

Rockdale took its largest lead of the game at 29-20 on an Alexander put back with 4:39 to play in the third.

It was all Alcovy for the remainder of the period.

Starting with a 3-pointer from Daja Barnes, one of the Tigers’ four long range jumpers in the second half, the visitors went on a 14-2 run and led 34-31 after Quantasia Perry grabbed a defensive rebound and raced to the other end of the floor for a lay up with 30 seconds to go.

Each team struggled in the early going as Tierra Hodges’ lay up at the 3:48 mark gave Alcovy the lead, but was the only points scored through the opening 4 1/2 minutes of the game.

Rockdale held Alcovy scoreless for the remainder of the first, and the Bulldogs picked up nine consecutive points, which included Casera Howard’s go-ahead 3-pointer, and held a seven-point lead after one.

Alcovy’s offense got going shortly after the second began and the Tigers eventually got the lead back at 14-13 on steals that led to lay ups on consecutive possessions by Keidra Sears and Waneisha Morris.

Thanks to Patton’s five points, Rockdale finished the half strong, scoring seven of the final eight points, to lead 20-15 at the break.

Sojourner Hall added 11 points for Rockdale, while Barnes and Ayanna Wimbush scored eight points each to pace Alcovy.