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It was not a banner day for Cedartown’s girls basketball team.

The Lady Bulldogs quite simply played flat in Thursday’s contest against Sonoraville in the first round opener. The first-round loss relegates Cedartown to the loser’s bracket, where they will fight for a higher placing in the Rockmart Christmas Tournament.

From the opening tip it was all-Lady Phoenix. Sonoraville (9-3), the runner-ups of last year’s Rockmart Christmas Tournament, were on fire from outside the perimeter. They hit five three-pointers in the first period to hold a 19-7 lead through one.

Once again in the second period, Sonoraville’s overpowering offense was too much for the Lady Bulldogs. Cedartown (1-2) struggled to find players open thanks to the smothering Lady Phoenix defense; even when they were open, the shots were not falling for Coach Gambrell’s squad. At halftime, Sonoraville held a commanding 36-19 lead.

It was yet another ho-hum period for Sonoraville as the Lady Phoenix exploded for 23 points in the third interval. Cedartown, on the other hand, tried their best to scratch and claw back as their deficit exceeded 30 points. Heading into the final period, the Lady Bulldogs trailed 59-27.

In the fourth period, Coach Stephanie Caudell yanked most of Sonoraville’s starters to rest them for their next game. As expected, Cedartown had much more success against the Lady Phoenix backups but it was too little, too late for them. The Lady Bulldogs outscored their opposition 16-2 over the final eight minutes but still dropped game one of the Rockmart Christmas Tournament 61-43.

Junior guard Keke Turner led all Cedartown scorers with 15 points in the loss. Qiana Watson and Kamryn Frazier added 9 points each, while Marycille Brumby scored 4. Zoe Diamond Paisley, Kam Cochran, and Roslyn Blankenship each chipped in with 2 points each.

Sonoraville star Abby Chambers dropped 26 points and nailed eight three-pointers in the Lady Phoenix triumph. Maliyah Parks scored 12 points whereas Alexa Geary scored 11. Kinsley Long finished with 4 points and Mattie Parker, Grace Coker, Madison Abernathy, and Brooke Jones scored 2 points for Sonoraville.

With the loss, Cedartown moves to the loser’s bracket of the Rockmart Christmas Tournament.

They will be in action today at 4 p.m. versus Bremen (3-9), who lost to Hiram yesterday 86-47.

The game will be played at the Rockmart Recreational Gym. For those unable to make the drive to the east side of the county, they can tune into the broadcast on WGAA Radio (106.1 FM, AM 1340, and WGAARadio.com).

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