By Nick Talbot
Killeen Daily Herald
BELTON - Harker Heights coach Shirretha Nelson wasn't happy with her team's performance.
Belton coach Brenda Gomez was pleasantly pleased with hers. Regardless, a Harker Heights win was never in question.
The No. 8 Lady Knights used a 19-0 run in the first quarter and put the Lady Tigers away quickly Friday in a 50-20 win.
"It was a very difficult game. If I would have predicted how we would have played, I don't think I would have saw what I did tonight," Nelson said. "I thought we were prepared and were going to come out and work on some things we had talked about (in practice), but it didn't quite work that way.
"It was very difficult for me to watch."
Harker Heights (18-0, 2-0 12-5A) didn't score for the game's first minute and 10 seconds.
After that the Lady Knights went on a tear, scoring 19 straight points that started with a putback by Brianna Freeman and culminated with a 3-pointer by Shanice Davis, who scored seven points but played only one quarter after receiving a technical foul in the opening seconds of the second.
She wasn't alone in getting rest. North Texas commit and senior post Eboniey Jeter didn't see action in the second half and Freeman sat the entire fourth quarter.
"We are going to get our kids some rest just because we have had a lot of games and any time I get an opportunity to rest my starters I am going to," Nelson said.
After the 19-point outburst by Heights, Belton (4-12, 0-2) did make a small run, outscoring the Lady Knights 8-2 over a 2½-minute stretch. Torie Henderson hit a 3-pointer and Aubrianna Garcia, a freshman who was starting her first game at the varsity level, scored five of her team-high seven points as the Lady Tigers cut the Heights lead to 21-10.
"They played hard, they were communicating much better and they were attempting to block out - I know (Harker Heights) got 20 offensive boards, but we were making an effort and they weren't uncontested," Gomez said. "That makes me happy. ... We weren't intimidated and that kind of surprised me."
However, after Garcia's bucket with 6:40 left in the second quarter, Belton did not score again until Briana Ragland got a putback with 1:54 left in the third.
"We just can't shoot right now," Gomez said. "We shot 26 percent and you can't win many games like that. We are getting the shots we want. We just have to put them in the hole."
During the 7½-minute scoreless stretch, Harker Heights pushed its lead to 37-10. And after that the starters hit the bench with only remaining in the game at a time.
With the starters and even some key role players on the bench, the Heights' offense went stagnant until JaQuan Jackson, who led the Lady Knights with 14 points, hit two late 3-pointers to push the lead over 30 points as the game wound down.