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PREP BASKETBALL: Lady Rams outstanding depth leads to impressive victory
Alise Akridge
Lady Rams senior Alise Akridge had a remarkable night in a win against the Morgan County Lady Bulldogs as she led her team with 15 points. Photo by Michael Pope.

MADISON, Ga. - Head coach Tiffani Johnson raved about the depth of her team this season, and it showed in the Newton Lady Rams’ 65-45 win over the Morgan County Lady Bulldogs.

The Lady Rams only trailed for a few brief minutes at the beginning of the ball game, when the Lady Bulldogs jumped out to a 3-0 lead. From that point on, it would be all Lady Rams as they would go on a 20-3 run to close out the quarter.

It was not just one Lady Ram leading the way though as several members of the team got on the scoreboard in the first quarter. That trend would continue until the final buzzer sounded, and it was very pleasing for Johnson.

"It's great. That's what we're looking for to extend our bench as far as possible and keep our bench fresh and outlast opponents," Johnson said. "It makes us hard to scout when everybody can contribute."

The Lady Rams did have some outstanding scorers as they had three players reach double digits in a game where they had 10 different players register points, while the Lady Bulldogs only had four. 

Leading the way for the Lady Rams was senior Alise Akridge, who finished with 15 points. She was followed closely by senior Tijunna Freeman, who finished with 13 points, and sophomore Ashleigh Norris, who finished with 11. Johnson was more than satisfied to see her two seniors leading the way.

"Alise played a great game; that's one of the better games I've seen Alise play. She was in it offensively and defensively," Johnson said. "I think Ti-Ti (Tijunna) Freeman had a really good game running the floor, some nice finishes around the basket and we saw really good things from her."

Rams starting point guard Maka'ya Cushion may not have had an impressive night on the stat sheet, but her leadership on and off the floor was hard not to notice as she seemed dialed in for all 36 minutes. This type of leadership is what Johnson wants from all the members of her team, and she loves to see it. 

"That's that floor general, and we talk to the team about how points are not the only way to contribute," said Johnson. "Just her leadership and poise on the floor adds to our mental state on the floor. She helps us keep that stability, and we need it and appreciate it."

Seeing the Lady Rams depth flow so well should put future teams on notice that his team is the real deal. Johnson's hammered the point home that their depth should make them hard to scout, and this performance cemented that fact.