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Fast start propels Nation Ford girls to playoff victory

The Nation Ford Falcons moved on to the second round of the Region 3-AAA playoffs after a huge opening quarter on Monday night, beating the Chapman Panthers 57-38.

The win was the first ever in the playoffs for Nation Ford in girls or boys basketball during its five-year existence. The Falcons will now take on the winner of Greenville-Seneca in the second round at 7 p.m. Thursday, also at home.

Nation Ford opened the game by taking control and led wire-to-wire in getting the win.

"We won this thing at the beginning," said Nation Ford coach Frank Snider. "Anytime we needed to make a shot we did. After the good start, we lost our focus some. We didn't play well in the second half."

The Falcons were paced by seniors Katie Bright and Zharne Glover. The two were a consistent scoring threat for Nation Ford as Bright had 20 points and Glover followed with 13 points.

Nation Ford opened the game on a 15-1 run and ended the quarter leading 21-8.

Chapman struggled with its ball handling all game as it committed 26 turnovers, six of which came in the opening quarter.

Chapman started 0 for 5 from the field and didn't score a field goal until 3:15 left in the first quarter.

Chapman went the first three minutes without scoring until Aahliyah Moore hit one of two free throws. The Panthers were led by Moore, who had 12 points, and Tanae Copeland, who had 16. Copeland scored her 1,000th career point in the game in the first quarter. She scored seven of her 16 points in the first quarter.

Nation Ford's scoring was divided up among several players.

In the opening quarter, sophomore Taylor Yarborough scored six of her eight points to lead the Falcons.

After opening 15-1, Chapman pulled within nine by going on a 5-0 run, before Nation Ford closed the quarter out.

The game got a lot more interesting from that point on as the ball handling for both teams began to deteriorate.

Each squad turned the ball over nine times in the second quarter, as the two teams matched each other basket-for-basket.

Bright led Nation Ford with six of its 12 points in the quarter.

Chapman tried to put a run together to cut into the Falcons' 31-12 lead, as it rattled off eight straight points with the help of 3-pointers from Copeland and Moore.

The rally helped to close the gap as Nation Ford took a 33-20 lead into the half.

Chapman continued to play the Falcons nearly shot-for-shot as each team struggled early in the third quarter shooting the ball.

Nation Ford started the quarter by scoring the first four points to go up 37-20. Chapman tried to stay within striking distance by making it 41-27 later in the quarter, but Copeland got into foul trouble and was forced from the game.

The Falcons put the game out of reach to start the fourth quarter by opening the period on an 8-0 run and went up by 20 at 51-31.

Nation Ford 57,

Chapman 38

Chapman

8

12

11

7

-

38

Nation Ford

21

12

12

12

-

57

Chapman - Tanae Copeland 16, Aahliyah Moore 12, Abbey Cheek 7, Kayla Hines 2, KK Cheek 1.

Nation Ford - Katie Bright 20, Zharne Glover 13, Taylor Yarborough 8, Ellen Bright 6, Kai McCorvey 6, Paris Bankole 4.

3-pointers - Chapman 5 (Tanae Copeland 2, Aahliyah Moore 3), Nation Ford 0. Team fouls - Chapman 13, Nation Ford 12. Fouled out - None.

Records: Chapman 9-14, Nation Ford 16-8.

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