Hornets pull away for strong season-opening victory

By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Sports Editor

CHELSEA – Three quarters of scoring 11 or more points and a strong defensive effort was more than enough to lift the Chelsea Hornets to a season-opening 49-21 win over the Minor Tigers on Thursday, Nov. 7.

Coming off their first Sweet 16 berth since 2001, the Hornets entered the game with confidence and the return of several key playmakers, and it showed in the opening quarter of the game.

Defensively, Chelsea limited Minor to just two made field goals and six total points in a defensive effort that remained dominant throughout the night, while Sydney Schwallie hit two 3-pointers and Pressley Rains another to help give the Hornets an 11-6 lead at the end of the first period.

That strong effort carried into the second quarter, as the Hornets held Minor to four more points and a combined 10 points and three field goals in the first half.

Chelsea, on the other hand, had found its offensive rhythm in the form of Jordan Parker.

After a scoreless first quarter, Parker scored eight points in the second quarter thanks to a 4-6 mark from the free throw line as well as two made field goals.

Her effort, combined with four more points from Rains and two from Ellen Fleming led to the Hornets scoring 14 points in the period to take a 25-10 lead into the half.

Minor was able to make some halftime adjustments in the third quarter, however, as the Tigers’ defense limited Chelsea to a quarter-low of six points behind just one made field goal.

The Tigers’ offense, however, wasn’t able to capitalize as Chelsea defense limited them to just seven points, which made up just one point in a 15-point deficit.

Heading to the final quarter up 31-17, Chelsea had a comfortable lead and it showed throughout the period.

Not only did the defense tie its best quarter of the game, limiting Minor to four points for the second time in the matchup, but the offense closed the game with a game-high 18-point quarter.

The Hornets got five points from Parker, while six total players scored in the period, including 3-pointers from Mary Henley Carney, Emily Lamberson and Schwallie, which led to them pulling away for the 49-21 victory.

Chelsea was led by Parker with 14 points, while Rains added 12 and Schwallie had nine.