Written by Aldean Starr, Staff Writer
The Lady Blazers put on a show for their home crowd in the first game at The Complex this season. On Sunday, the team had a thrilling comeback victory against Eckerd to remain unbeaten at 2-0 on the season. The comeback is significant especially for a young team coming off a 14-15 record last season.
“The biggest thing for us was a massive amount of resiliency for a club especially on a year that we have eight new kids and eight old ones and majority of the kids are earning the opportunity to play and it’s such a competitive environment which is awesome,” Kiley Hill, head coach, said.
The game was competitive throughout the entire contest with the first half ending in a 26-26 tie at halftime. Eckerd slightly took control in the third quarter of the game after taking a 35-31 lead into the fourth quarter.
“We could not make a shot, we had good looks, got a little confused a couple times and had some crucial turnovers during the middle of the third quarter, but in a young season those are all typical things that are going to occur,” Coach Hill said.
The mistakes by the Blazers continued into the fourth as Eckerd pushed their lead to a ten point deficit with six minutes left in the game and it seemed as if the momentum and the game was going to be won by Eckerd. But the Lady Blazers soon caught momentum and held Eckerd scoreless in the last six minutes of the game to cap off an impressive comeback victory that ended with the Lady Blazers on top of a 48-45 victory.
“I think we did a great job for making defensive stands and forcing them into tough challenged shots,” Coach Hill said.
Valdosta State’s young players had a great showing with freshmen Madi Mitchell scoring a team high 15 points, she also lead the team in assists and rebounds. Freshmen Aaliyah Cheatham also put up 14 points while senior forward Maggie Davis played 37 minutes and posted 11 points with two clutch free throws that sealed the game.
The Blazers next contest is Saturday, Nov. 21, at 5:30 p.m. in The Complex.