GALLATIN - The Gallatin Green Wave girls basketball team ended a 16-year losing streak against Mt. Juliet on Friday with a 70-39 home win against the Lady Bears.
“We’re trying to get better and play well every game,” Gallatin head coach Jerry Landers said. “The goal is to have the best year we’ve had in the last 20.”
The Green Wave took control of the game early and didn’t let up. Gallatin used a bevy of quick, athletic guards to pressure the ball and force turnovers throughout the game.
“We had good defensive intensity,” Landers said. “We’ve been working on playing hard without fouling. Earlier we were playing hard but fouling too much. We’re trying to play smarter.”
“The quickness of their team defensively caused us some problems, and they shot the ball really well on top of that,” said Mt. Juliet head coach Chris Fryer. “They’ve got all the pieces to be a really good team.”
In the first quarter, Gallatin built leads of as many as nine points before finishing with a 17-9 lead.
The Green Wave used an 11-4 run to close out the second quarter and take a 33-15 lead into halftime.
Mt. Juliet came out in the third quarter with a zone defense, but Gallatin answered with four 3-pointers in a row and five for the quarter in building a 52-27 lead after three. The Green Wave outscored Mt. Juliet 18-12 in the fourth quarter for the final score of 70-39.
“For us, it was huge night because a couple of our seniors who play a lot of minutes were sick this week and didn’t practice much,” Landers said of Jo’Neca Talley and Kayla Carman. “They couldn’t play a lot of minutes tonight. Some of the younger girls stepped up and played well.
“Sania Ricks played really well,” Landers said of his freshman guard.
Janaya Newsom led Gallatin in scoring with 17 points and had a strong game defensively. Ricks added 15 points for Gallatin. “Janaya had a really good game,” Landers said. “Everybody who played had a solid game.”
Mt. Juliet was led by Halle Jones with 18 points and Naveah Majors with 10.
“We’re inexperienced right now. We’re working to get better,” Fryer said. He praised the performance of Majors in the game. “She’s one of our few experienced players, so she has a lot of responsibility on her shoulders.”
The Lady Bears are still adjusting to the loss of their star post player Emma Palmer, who’s signed to play collegiately at Northern Kentucky University. She suffered a season-ending injury just a few weeks before the start of the season, Fryer said. “It’s hard to adjust this early in the season.”
Mt. Juliet’s record is now 3-4 and 0-2 in district play. They will play at Siegel on Tuesday.
Gallatin improved to a perfect 9-0 and 2-0 in the district play. The Green Wave will host Siegel on Monday and then host Tullahoma and Rockvale in the Green Wave Christmas Classic next weekend.
Girls Box Score:
Gallatin (70): Janaya Newsom 17, Sania Ricks 15, Jo’Neca Talley 9, Kayla Carman 8, Cialife Carter 8, Je’Leah Cole 6, Kanae Carman 3, Jeremia Montgomery 3, A’Niya Boone 1.
Mt. Juliet (39): Halle Jones 18, Nevaeh Majors 10, Keilman 6, Howard 2, Ashlyn Riggs 2, Kendall 1.