Brittney Richardson started things off with a bang and Lauren Cunningham put the hammer down late as the Izard County Consolidated Lady Cougars opened play in the A-AA brackets of the 58th annual NEA Tournament with a resounding 59-46 thumping of the Tuckerman Lady Bulldogs Dec. 21 at the Arkansas State University Convocation Center in Jonesboro.
Richardson pumped in her squad's first six points of the game, on her way to 16 on the afternoon, while Cunningham finished off a great game by tossing in eight points in the final frame of the Lady Cougs' win. Cunningham tallied a game-high 25 points for ICC, while Richardson added nine boards and six assists to her point total for the afternoon.
Tuckerman insisted on pushing the ball in the paint during the first period, only to find the Lady Cougars waiting to reject the Lady Bulldogs' interior shots at the hoop.
ICC grabbed an 18-10 lead after the first period, punctuated with a 3-ball from Chelsie Yancey (five points) late in the frame.
Richardson started the second period like gangbusters for the Lady Cougs by canning six points to help ICC remain on top.
By the time Sammi Fowler (12 points) hit a layup late in the second, the Lady Cougars held serve at 28-18.
Tuckerman ended the first half of play with a mini run of 8-3, but ICC took a 31-26 lead to intermission.
Fowler kicked in a jumper to start the third for ICC part of her six points in the frame.
The Lady Bulldogs just had no answer for ICC, and they trailed 49-37 after three.
Making sure Tuckerman stayed down, Cunningham closed the game with a personal 6-0 late in the fourth to cap the Lady Cougars' 13-point win.
Kara Yancey added two points for ICC.