Defense Brings Vinton County Past Jackson

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Suffocating defense paired with solid free throw shooting down the stretch propelled the Vinton County Lady Vikings (2-0) over the Jackson Ironladies (1-1) 48-31, Tuesday night.

The Lady Vikings held Jackson to missing its first eight shots, and the Ironladies weren’t able to collect their first basket until 1:16 left in the opening quarter. While the Vinton County’s offense struggled to get going, the Lady Viking man-to-man defense disrupted Jackson’s offensive execution all night.

“I think our defense is much improved from last year,” Vinton County head coach Rod Bentley said.

Michaela Puckett tallied a double-double to lead the Lady Vikings scoring 18 points and grabbing 10 rebounds.

“She is the best post player in the league, Michaela Puckett is,” Bentley said, “She is very versatile for us.”

The Lady Vikings only shot 3/18 from the perimeter, and Puckett emerged as the go-to option on the low block to get easy baskets when outside shots refused to fall.

Rebeka Green led the Ironladies with 17 points and three assists and gave the Ironladies a chance to be in striking distance.

“Rebeka Green, we feel, is one of the best players we will play so we were giving her a lot of attention,” Bentley said.

Vinton County separated themselves from Jackson and cemented the victory after sinking several free throws. The Lady Vikings finished 17/26 from the charity stripe. Solid free throw shooting is something that coach Bentley emphasized in practice.

“We really work hard at the free throw line,” Bentley added. “We love practicing free throws.”

Both teams will travel to Alexander for their next matchup, Jackson will face the Lady Spartans on Nov. 30 and the Lady Vikings will make the trip to Albany on Dec. 3 to open TVC play.