Saying it's been a tough basketball season for the Thomson High School Lady Bulldogs might be putting it mildly.
Despite showing signs of improvement in just about every game they have played, the team still can't put it all together to win. Through last weekend, the Lady Bulldogs had managed to win only one game this season.
One of their latest losses came last Friday night when they hosted the Liberty County Lady Panthers, who handed Thomson another setback. The final score was 35-31.
"We've been in just about every game we've played this season, but we just can't seem to find a way to put the other team away," first year Thomson Head Coach Michael Williams said.
Against Liberty County, free-throws turned out to be the culprit with the Lady Bulldogs hitting on just 5-of-12 such shots.
"Things like not being able to hit our free-throws or missing inside shots have hurt us a lot this season," Coach Williams said.
With the season coming to an end soon, he hopes his team can win some of their last games and at least finish on a high-note. If that happens, Coach Williams believes it can provide a positive message for his team next season.
Both teams got off to a sluggish start in the first period with the Lady Panthers clinging to a 6-3 lead going into the second period. Thomson's Natasha Ballard, a junior, seemed to be everywhere during that eight-minute stretch. She rebounded well and played strong both offensively and defensively.
Just before the half, Ballard stole the ball and dribbled down court before making a beautiful pass to Chiquita Kendrick that cut Liberty's lead to 12-11.
In the third period, Thomson's Kierra Brown demonstrated several fine skills - both offensively and defensively. She made a steal and connected on a layup to make it a 16-15 game in favor of Liberty County with 4:28 to play. Thomson later took a 17-16 lead - their first one of the game. The game later became tied before Thomson's Zakia Wilson hit a three-pointer to give the Lady Bulldogs a 22-20 lead.
Thomson missed several inside shots during the fourth period, which ended up hurting them, as has been the case in several games this season.
Ballard led Thomson with 14 points. Other players contributing points for Thomson included Wilson, 6, Brown, 5, Breanna Chatman, 3, Kendrick, 2 and Nekia McNair, 1, respectively.
Thomson recently lost three other games, too. Those losses included a 55-47 defeat at the hands of Jefferson County on Jan. 27. Wilson led the Lady Bulldogs with 18 points, followed by Brown with 11 points.
They also suffered a 39-29 loss to Richmond Hill on Jan. 24. Ballard led Thomson with 9 points in that game, followed by Wilson and Brianna Hart with 6 points each. The team also was upended by Baldwin 70-20 in an earlier region game.
Thomson plays host to West Laurens this Saturday night.