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Vidalia too strong for Lady Rebels
Effingham County’s Kyana Barber battles her way past Vidalia’s Shaniqua Williams (3) and Cassie DeMarco. - photo by Photo by Pat Donahue

The combination of Kourtnee Williams and Shekinah Henry proved a lethal mix for the Vidalia Lady Indians.

Williams, a 5-foot-5 freshman, and Henry, a 6-1 sophomore, teamed up for 40 points in Vidalia’s 60-51 win over the Effingham County Lady Rebels on Friday night. The Lady Indians, ranked No. 5 in Class AA, improved to 24-1 with the victory.

But the Lady Rebels fought the Lady Indians from wire to wire. They grabbed a 15-10 lead in a frantic first quarter on Sierra Goldwire’s 3-point play at the 2:04 mark, and Goldwire’s putback with 19 seconds remaining in the quarter kept the lead at give, 19-14.

The Lady Indians forged a 21-21 tie on Henry’s 14-footer, and the game was tied twice more in the final five minutes of the first half. Goldwire and Kyana Barber traded baskets and assists to put the Lady Rebels in front 28-24, but Williams led a 10-0 run in the final 2:48 to put Vidalia in front for good.

Still, the Lady Rebels had scored more points in the half (28) than they had for four quarters in a 36-23 loss to Wayne County on Tuesday night.

Williams scored on a layup after stealing an inbounds pass to give Vidalia a 30-28 lead, and she came up with another steal and layup just before the buzzer to stretch the margin to 34-28.

Henry opened the second half with back-to-back baskets to widen the gap to 10 points, 38-28, and the lead grew to as much as 11 at 43-32.

Effingham chipped away at the deficit, and Barber’s drive down the lane cut the lead to 45-41 with 5:39 to play in the game. The Lady Rebels had the ball and a chance to trim the lead to two points, but turned it over as Shaniqua Williams went coast to coast to make it 47-41. Kourtnee Williams then turned in a dazzling play, feeding Henry with a behind-the-back pass on the run for a 49-41 lead.

Shatika Flowers’ 3-pointer cut the lead to 51-45 with 2:52 to go, but the Lady Rebels couldn’t get any closer.

Kourtnee Williams finished with 21 points and five assists, and Henry added 19 points. Keyondra Powell had 10 points for the Lady Indians.

Goldwire had 20 points before fouling out in her final home game. Barber had 13 points, Amanda Young scored 11, Flowers had three and Marie Fogle, Whitney Roberson and Stephanie Williams each had two points.