Darton leading scorer Michelle Mitchell pushes the ball up court against the Central Georgia Tech defense during Wednesday's game in Albany. Mitchell finished with a double-double --- 19 points and 10 boards -- to lead the Lady Cavs to a blowout win. (David Mann/Special to The Herald)
ALBANY — Non-stop scoring and stifling defense.
That’s what it’s all about at Darton these days.
The Lady Cavs, who found out early Wednesday the program was ranked No. 20 in the latest NJCAA Division I Poll for the first time since former Georgia State coach Lea Henry took over the program last year, went out and did more of the same Wednesday night against Central Georgia Tech in a 71-47 blowout win. CGT came into the game third in the region behind Darton.
It was Darton’s sixth win in a row, and the Lady Cavs (8-1) can go ahead and mark down No. 7 as well — Saturday’s game against Middle Georgia College has already been won via forfeit.
Wednesday’s game started ugly — Darton led just 32-29 at halftime after both teams combined for 29 turnovers — but it ended with the Lady Cavs’ offense exploding in the second half and the defense simply shutting down CGT to the tune of a 3-for-36 shooting performance after halftime.
“We just talked about defending better, that was the key to the second half,” Henry said
Sophomore Michelle Mitchell led the Lady Cavaliers on a 22-7 run to start the second half. Mitchell led the team with 19 points and 10 rebounds, while fellow sophomore Chanteniece Fann added 19 points and nine boards.
The backbreaker came with 12:04 left to play when Mitchell slashed through the lane for a layup, got fouled and converted the three-point play at the line to make it a 52-36 lead.
“I just thought we ran our offense well, posting up with Michelle, transition layups, getting back screens to work,” Henry said. “Bottom line, we executed well, so it was a great win for us.”
The Lady Cavs didn’t look back.
SGTC MEN 71, ALBANY TECH 69: Albany Tech's Antwon Tuff missed a wide-open 3-pointer at the buzzer Wednesday, and South Georgia Tech held on for a two-point victory to stay undefeated.
The Jets (8-0, 3-0 Region XVII) were led in scoring by Stedmon Lemon's 19 points, while Anthony Ethridge added 17 points.
Four players scored in double figures for Albany Tech (2-5, 0-1) — Deandre Harper (23 points), Tuff (11 points), Tony Fears (11 points) and Nouhoum Boucoum (10 points, 8 rebounds).
SGTC WOMEN 74, ALBANY TECH 62: Lashay Lettingham's career night wasn't enough to prevent South Georgia Tech to snap Albany Tech's six-game winning streak Wednesday night in Americus.
Lettingham, a 5-foot-10 sophomore from Palm Beach Garden, Fla., led the Lady Titans (7-3, 1-1) with 32 points, but four South Georgia Tech players scored in double figures to help the Lady Jets improve to 5-3 overall and 1-2 in the region.
Portia McCray led SGTC with 17 points, while Nikkei Blackburn added 13 points and 14 points and DeKoya Mack and Shaquaya Daniels each scored 13 points.
TAE BOYS ROUT CRISP:
DAWSON — Raleigh Carlson scored 16 points, Connor Walsh added 14 and the Terrell Academy boys basketball team opened the season with a 64-50 win against Crisp Academy.
Josh Smith led Crisp with 12 points.
Terrell (1-0) next plays at home against Byne Christian today.