Panthers build some momentum

On senior night, Tayanna Jones torched Nash Central for a career high 45 points as North Johnston defeated the Bulldogs 73-49. (Michael Held photo)

BY MICHAEL HELD

Sports editor

KENLY—It’s been a tough stretch for the North Johnston girls basketball team the past few weeks as the Panthers have run the gauntlet that is the Eastern Plains Conference.

Entering the week having lost its four previous conference games, North Johnston won 2-of-3 contests last week including a key 73-49 home win over Nash Central on senior night to earn the No. 3 seed in this week’s conference tournament.

Tayanna Jones had a special night as the Georgetown-commit player poured in a career high 45 points to lead the Panthers (16-5 overall, 5-5 EPC) past the Bulldogs.

Nash Central simply had no answer for the senior standout as she routinely beat defenders off the dribble and attacked the rim.

Jones made 16-of-20 shots at the foul line and North Johnston stretched what was a 33-25 halftime lead into a blowout by the end of the night.

Despite Jones’ brilliance, it was a team effort that did in the Bulldogs.

Lindsey Massengill was a perfect 6-for-6 at the free throw line and finished with 12 points. Jordyn Scott created many turnovers with her defensive pressure and added eight points. Mackenzie Gibson was 4-of-5 from the foul line.

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