Nunley leads all scorers with 24 points
FLETCHER — Christmas break didn’t impact the Sterling Lady Tigers as they returned to the hardwood and posted a convincing 57-16 win over archrival Fletcher Tuesday night.
Sterling was led by senior Emma Nunley who finished with 24 points including four three-point buckets. Teammates Ashlynn Clift and Ava Alexander chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively. The third consecutive win improved Sterling’s season record to 10-3.
Lady Tiger head coach Jennifer Garner anticipated the letdown from the holiday break, but that fear quickly dissipated after Sterling jumped out to a 12-1 first quarter lead. During that time, Nunley tallied seven of the 12 first quarter points on three consecutive buckets, including one of her treys.
“I was worried coming off the Christmas break,” she said. “But we shot the ball well, especially the threes. We were able to get our legs back under us and we took care of the ball, played good defense and shot well. We wanted to play sharp, and not play down.”
Fletcher didn’t score its first basket until the 4:24 mark of the second quarter as Sterling led 21-5. The Lady Tigers outscored Fletcher 17-6 in the second stanza to take a 29-7 halftime lead. Sterling tallied a trio of treys in the second quarter with Nunley, Morgan Curry and Clift connecting from behind the arc.
The third quarter was more of the same as Nunley, Clift and Curry combined for four more three-pointers as Sterling took a commanding 53-11 lead heading into the final eight minutes.
Sterling’s starters played a short time in the fourth quarter as the reserves received were subbed in by Garner with about six minutes to go. Point production dropped off for Sterling as Fletcher outscored the Lady Tigers the rest of the way, 5-4.
Sterling was scheduled to play Gracemont Thursday in the Black Diamond tournament at Rush Springs. A win would pit the Lady Tigers against the winner of the Rush Springs-Geronimo game at 7 p.m. Friday. Sterling travels to Ninnekah Jan. 10 and returns home to face Alex on Jan. 13.