By TONY STINNETT
The smallest player on the court made the biggest difference as the Cannon County Lionettes remained perfect and ended York's seven-game winning streak with a 68-47 win against the Lady Dragons at Robert A. Harris Gymnasium Friday (Dec. 7).
Abby Jakes, Cannon County's 5-foot-4 senior guard, recorded a double double with 18 points and 11 rebounds, both game highs, and also collected five steals and shared three assists as Cannon County (9-0, 3-0 District 8-AA) rolled to its ninth straight win to start the 2012-13 season.
Jakes was one of four players in double figures for the Lionettes.
Abbey Sissom had another stellar game and narrowly missed a double double. The junior standout finished with 17 points and seven assists. She also had three steals.
Jordan Hollis and Madison Walkup had 10 points each and Rebekah Faulkner finished with seven points, eight rebounds and a block.
"Anytime you have a guard with 11 rebounds that's always big," Cannon County Head Coach Michael Dodgen said. "Abby is 5-foot-4 and she's getting 11 rebounds. That's determination. She's having a good season and she was big again (against York)."
Jakes was 6-of-12 from 3-point range and connected for half of the team's 12 treys. Her stat line indicated a complete all-around game.
"I'm excited to back playing and helping the team," Jakes said. "We have a lot of good shooters and offensive players but we also take pride in our defense and rebounding."
The Lionettes continued to pile up the points. Cannon County surpassed the 60-point mark for the sixth time and are the 12th highest-scoring team in the state - regardless of classification.
Cannon County got off to a sluggish start and used mini-runs to maintain a narrow lead against York (8-2, 1-1) in the pivotal early-season league game. The Lionettes led 13-12 after the first quarter and 30-22 at the half.
"We were getting good shots but we were not hitting early," Jakes said. "We just didn't seem to play with a lot of energy in the first half. We knew we had to turn it up a notch in the second half against a good district team."
Cannon County methodically pulled away at the start of the third quarter with Sissom knocking down a big 3-pointer. Jakes made a perfect pass to a streaking Walkup who finished to provide a 37-25 lead with 3:05 remaining.
After York fought back to within seven, Walkup broke its back with six points in a 27 seconds to provide the Lionettes with a commanding lead. Hollis and Jakes connected for back-to-back 3-pointer. Walkup scored seven of her 10 in the third quarter and Faulkner tallied four in the quarter.
"We had several players step up again but (Walkup) gave us a good lift in the third quarter," Dodgen said. "Walkup and Faulkner have been solid in their roles and that is a big reason for our early success. We just have to keep getting better."
Cannon County used long-range shooting to finish off York.
Hollis knocked down back-to-back 3-pointers and Jakes later followed with consecutive treys of her own as Cannon County put the finishing touches on the victory.