Donelson Christian Academy used strong defense to defeat Merrol Hyde 53-35 on Nov. 26.

Donelson Christian trailed by one point at halftime but dominated the second half with defense and rebounds.

The Lady Hawks were held to 11 points in the second half. Their shots could not seem to fall, and they did not get many second-shot opportunities.

The same couldn’t be said for the Lady Wildcats who picked up rebounds on both sides of the court.

Donelson Christian amassed 19 offensive rebounds in the first half alone, and senior Anna Strum brought in six of her own throughout the game.

Lady Wildcats’ head coach Karen Singer believes Strum has a “unique ability” to find the ball off the rim.

“She’s a special offensive rebounder,” Singer said. “Not everyone’s like that. She just has a nose for the ball. She knows where the ball’s going to come off, and she’s able to get that.

“It’s the fight of who wants it more. I think we all did that very well in the second half, especially.”

The Lady Wildcats started out 3-0, and they will need to keep playing good defense and crashing the boards to keep winning.

“I think we can build on it just by everybody working together and everybody working hard to hit shots, getting the rebounds, doing the small things and just playing the next play,” Singer said.

Merrol Hyde head coach Jimmy Steen saw the game turn after halftime.

“They executed better than we did in the second half,” Steen said. “They made a few more hustle plays. We’re inexperienced as well, but they’re inexperienced as well. But they just executed better and got the looks that they wanted a little better than we did.

“Every game is an experience, whether you win or lose. You have teaching points from everything even when you lose. We’ll get in better shape; that’ll help us. We’ll look at film and just keep working on what we’re doing.”

BOX SCORE

Donelson Christian (53): Anna Shrum 13, Jaylee Lopez 9, Adrionna Dawson 8, Bailey Smith 8, Sam Zapton 7, Sara McGlasson 6, Reagan Smiley 2.

Merrol Hyde (35): Macy Thomas 20, Peyton Mingle 8, Olivia Short 3, Joslin Bowser 2, Taylor Jordan 2.

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