Lady Hornets bumped out by Veribest five

The Lady Hornets were bumped off the court Tuesday night in Panther Creek when Veribest swooped in and took the bi-district title with a 53-42 win over the Hornets. In Tuesday night’s showdown with Veribest, Rochelle coach Mike Gardner said, “We were in control of this game from the tip-off, leading by 10 at half time. We struggled through the third quarter and were leading by four points midway through the fourth when Tanda Cook was called for her fifth foul. “You could almost hear the air rush out of our balloons,” said Gardner. “We had a total breakdown on both ends of the floor. Cook and Adele Richardson had strong games. Our team had a 15-10 record this year and exceeded all my expectations. If our enrollment stays the same next year, I will have a surprise for the teams we square off against. Get ready, we’re bringing a load. The Lady Hornet basketball team will be something to watch for the next few years.” It was no surprise when Cook delivered another show-stopping performance in Panther Creek with 29 points against Veribest. Cook compiled an average of 28 points per game this year, and according to coach Gardner, “Scoring 30 points or more per game was pretty easy for her.” Only a junior, Cook will return to the courts next year to more than likely lead the Hornets in another successful basketball season. Other Rochelle players who got on the board against Veribest were Crowder with 6, Richardson 5 and Danielle Adams 2. Score by quarters: Rochelle 13 14 8 7’42 Veribest 5 12 14 22’53 Losing four seniors this year, Adele Richardson, Samantha Bryson, Sarah Crowder and Kim Sparks, Gardner remains confident that the new recruits as well as the existing Varsity Lady Hornets will continue to give the competition a force to be reckoned with. “We have a new transfer student that came from Mason that I feel will be a good player to watch,” he said. “She’s got the potential to be a really strong player. We also have three eighth graders coming up that might have a spot on our starting lineup. “We’re going to be a hard team to go up against next year. We’ll probably still have a good competition with Brookesmith; however, they are loosing three key players this year. “In my opinion, it very well may be Rochelle’s year next year. We’ll have girls next year that can help Cook carry the load. I feel like we’ll be a more balanced ball club.”

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