Riesha Thompson recorded nine points, seven rebounds, five assists and four steals for Piedmont. Carlie Flowers finished with eight points. Breanna Brazier had two 3-point baskets and six points. Bre Green, Keshauna Jones and Tiffany Prater each scored two points. Jones had eight rebounds. Green was 2-for-2 at the free throw line and added five rebounds and two steals.
Piedmont coach Terrace Ridley said her players put in a lot of work during the Christmas break.
“Over the holidays, we had maybe three days off. We practiced every day three or four hours,” Ridley said. “You would think that the girls would not want to be here because it’s the holidays but they practiced hard every day.”
Ridley said the Bulldogs focused on shooting and defense in the time between the conclusion of the Van Deerman Classic on December 21 and the game at Hokes Bluff.
“Mainly, we had more defensive days than anything in our practices,” she said. “We had a chance to move up some of those eighth-grade girls that are going to be playing next year as ninth-graders to practice with us and it gave us the opportunity to do some scrimmaging.”
The Bulldogs played two low-scoring games in Jacksonville’s Van Deerman Classic. They opened against Ashville on December 20 and lost 45-27. Piedmont led 10-8 after one quarter but scored just five points in the second quarter and two in the fourth. Green scored 15 points, including 10 in the first quarter. Brazier and Paige Gowens each had a 3-point basket in the third quarter. Thompson and Jaylen Major had two points apiece. Flowers and Prater had one point each.
In the consolation game the following night, Pell City edged Piedmont 31-27. The Bulldogs’ only points of the first quarter came on a 3-point basket by Jakeiya Mitchell. Piedmont fell behind 8-3 after one quarter and never caught up. Green ended with 14 points and was 9-for-12 at the line. Mitchell finished with six points. Thompson and Brazier each had three points and Jones scored one point.