By Joshua Huff, sports editor
VESTAVIA HILLS – An unpleasant first quarter morphed into 19-6 halftime deficit for the Hewitt-Trussville girls’ basketball team on Tuesday as the Huskies fell to Vestavia Hills, 46-41, despite a strong fourth quarter from Amiya Payne and Erica Jones.
Hewitt-Trussville was held without a basket in a first quarter where the two teams combined to score just three points. Vestavia Hills scored the first points outside of a free throw with two minutes left in the first quarter. The Huskies would not score their first points of the game until Anyce Harvey hit a 3-pointer a minute into the second quarter. From there, the Rebels pulled ahead by nine points before ending the half with a 16-9 lead.
No Hewitt-Trussville player managed to hit more than one basket in the first half.
Despite Vestavia Hills dominating the half-court game and controlling the boards, Hewitt-Trussville managed to chip away at the Rebels’ lead throughout the third quarter. Jones was a force for the Huskies in the third. She scored nine points and her layup with 1:57 left in the quarter cut the Huskies’ deficit to just one point, 23-22. Unfortunately for Hewitt-Trussville, a technical foul along with a made 3-pointer proved to be quite the momentum killer as that five-point swing turned into a 7-0 run that gave the Rebels a 30-22 lead heading into the fourth quarter.
Vestavia Hills then stretched its lead to 10 points, 39-29, with 3:43 left in regulation, but the Huskies went on a 9-2 run to cut the deficit to 42-39 behind a strong fourth quarter from both Jones and Payne. The two combined to score 17 points in the final quarter.
However, a litany of fouls and dead-eye free-throw shooting from the Rebels overshadowed a determined Hewitt-Trussville rally in the waning moments.
With the loss, the Huskies slipped to 13-5 on the season. It was only Hewitt-Trussville’s second loss since Dec. 17.
Jones led the Huskies with 18 points, and Payne followed with 10 points.