CLOVER — The Fort Mill Lady Jackets got the 2013-2014 season started off on the right foot with a major upset beating the sixth-ranked Ridge View Lady Blazers.
Fort Mill won 49-42 at the Clover Optimist Classic at Clover High School. The Lady Jackets finished third in its division at the tournament.
The Lady Jackets were led by sophomore Madison Hendrix, who scored 17 points, and senior Kayla Godwin, who scored 12. Fort Mill controlled the game from the opening tip and made new head coach Brett Childers look good in his first game with the Lady Jackets.
“I realize how big this win was, but I’m not sure they do,” he said. “I couldn’t be more proud of this group to do this well in transition and with a new staff.”
The Lady Jackets struggled at times against Lancaster and fell 46-36. Hendrix again led with 16 points, but it was Fort Mill’s free-throw shooting that hurt the team the most as they went just 14-33 from the line.
Despite Lancaster having more turnovers than Fort Mill in the game (19 to 12), the Lady Jackets gave up too much height to Lancaster’s Phoebe Johnson, who is committed to UNC-Wilmington, on the baseline as she dominated the low post to score 20 points for the Lady Bruins.
In the consolation game of the gray division against Seneca, Fort Mill dominated from the opening tip to win 55-26.
Hendrix led with 12 points and senior Arianna Grevious added 10 to pace the Lady Jackets.
Seneca opened with three straight turnovers to start the game and Fort Mill started 9-0 before a Seneca time out slowed the action. However, after the time out, Fort Mill picked up the paced and never looked back to take a 23-8 lead after the first quarter.
Fort Mill shot 34 percent from the field (20-59) in the win, but still struggle at the charity strip, going 9-26.
Defense was the name of the game for Fort Mill as it caused 28 Seneca turnovers leading to a lot of fast-break points for the Lady Jackets.
“We were pleased with how we played all week with the exception of a quarter and a half,” Childers said. “Anytime you can come out of a three game tournament with a couple wins that is good.”
Fort Mill opens the regular season this week at home against Forestview and then will play new school River Bluff High at home next week.