Concord forward Kayla Richardson and guard Sydney Harlan combined for 25 points in the first half alone as the Lady Pirates built a 10-point halftime cushion and held off West Side's late surge for a 52-47 victory on Friday night in 1A-2 South Conference play in Greers Ferry.
"The biggest key was defensively we did a pretty good job on [Alexis Barnes] and [Abby] Turney," said Concord Coach Michael Strother.
"Those two are really what makes them go and Harlan and [Megan] Talley did a pretty good job on them. Turney has been averaging about 25 points per game over the past several games so I thought holding her to 13 points was a big key. If we hadn't of done a good job on those two, I doubt we would have won the game," added Strother.
Harlan showed the hot hand early, draining a three-pointer from right corner followed by a runner in the lane, giving the Lady Pirates a 5-2 lead.
The Lady Eagles chipped away and eventually tied the game at 9-9 on a three-point play from post player Melissa Hendrickson, who grabbed an offensive rebound and scored while drawing contact.
Concord closed the first quarter with a 10-1 run, which included two baskets from Harlan and one each from Richardson, Talley and reserve forward Mandy Thompson, who scored off an assist from forward Emanda Reeves.
Richardson took over in the second quarter, scoring all 10 points for Concord, which pushed its lead to 29-15 when Richardson hit a jumper inside the charity stripe.
Late in the first half, West Side reserve guard Carra Duncan responded with a heavily defended pull up jumper from left elbow, trimming West Side's deficit to 29-19 at halftime.
West Side outscored Concord 14-11 in the third quarter. Down 40-25 after a driving layup by Talley, the Lady Eagles closed the period with am 8-0 run sparked by Turney, who drilled a three-pointer from right wing in transition.
Barnes added a midrange jumper from left baseline then post player Taylor Clark, who led West Side with four points in the third quarter, turned an offensive rebound into a free throw.
West Side guard Whitney England came away with a backside offensive rebound and scored, leaving Concord with a 40-33 lead heading into the final eight minutes of play.
With Concord holding a 44-37 lead nearing the 6:00 mark, Turney turned a pair of steals into two quick baskets and Barnes added a free throw as the Lady Eagles suddenly pulled within four before Reeves canned two from the stripe.
Turney picked a steal and finished with a driving layup then Turney hit a pull up jumper from right elbow, while Concord managed two free throws from Talley, whose second foul shot gave the Lady Pirates a 48-46 lead with 1:53 remaining.
Page 2 of 2 - Concord, which finished second behind South Side Bee Branch in conference play, used stout defense to close out the victory as Reeves came away with a steal that led to a short jumper from Richardson then Talley and reserve forward Mary Thompson each sank a free throw after defensive stands.
Following Turney's team-high 13 points, Clark and Hendrickson each added 10 points for West Side (11-18, 6-8). Richardson scored a game-high 22 points for Concord (18-11, 12-2), Harlan followed with 12, Talley added eight and Reeves finished with seven.
"Kayla finally came back around," said Strother. "The last few games she has been struggling a little it on offense. But she found a rhythm at high post tonight and hit some shots that gave her some confidence.
"When she plays with confidence she will go rebound and play better defensively also. Kayla knocked down some big shots tonight and we needed her to," added Strother.