By David Wheeler/Special to the NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Tupelo Lady Wave head coach Matt Justice disavowed any dramatic halftime speech.
He should keep the transcript, though, for future reference.
The Lady Wave used a 24-point scoring margin in the second half Tuesday to punch a 63-42 victory over the Kossuth Lady Aggies, part of the Golden Wave Tip-Off Challenge.
“We really didn’t have to change our game plan,” Justice said. “We really got everything we wanted in the first half, the shots just were not going in.
“We just kept applying pressure, kept grinding.”
In their opener, the Lady Aggies (0-1) played their way to a 24-21 halftime advantage. Then, the Lady Wave (2-0) grabbed the momentum by the tail in the third quarter.
Tupelo went on a 15-2 run to open the period, capped by a pair of baskets by sophomore Jaleigha Polk, moving to a 36-26 lead.
The Lady Wave made another push to begin the fourth quarter. An 11-0 run to begin the period saw a pair of baskets by sophomore Braxton Thomas, and Tupelo was in command at 53-32.
“We’re young, and we let their pressure get to us,” first year Kossuth head coach Rick Howell said. “They got us out of our offense, and we couldn’t get back in it.
“We did OK for a half, but in the second half, we got scared.”
Polk led Tupelo with 20 points. Baylee Turner led Kossuth with 12.
“In the first half, we were a little passive on offense,” Justice said. “They threw a zone at us, and after we adjusted we were able to break it.”
Tupelo is at Mooreville on Thursday.