Lady Devils off to a good start, prepare for district opener

Published 7:00 am Friday, January 5, 2018

The Pearl River Central High School girls basketball team is off to one of its best starts in recent years and the team hopes to use that momentum to reach the state playoffs this season.

Out of 17 games played so far this year, the Lady Devils hold a 13-4 record. Harlee Davis, a junior, is the team’s leading scorer with an average of 13 points per game. Pearl River Central girls basketball Head Coach Tony LaBella said Davis is having a good season but he believes teammates and fans have yet to see her best performance on the court.

“I believe her point per game average will increase as the season goes on but she’s a player that doesn’t focus too much on statistics. She just wants to win and help the team reach the state playoffs,” LaBella said.

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Davis is also averaging 4.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.3 steals per game so far this season.

“She has improved in her passing skills and whenever we need a basket in the game, she’s our go-to person and that’s a stressful situation for anyone else but she handles the pressure well,” teammate Brooklyn Howe said.

The Lady Devils have won eight out of their last 10 games, with the only losses coming from games against Stone High School and Petal High School.

PRC will begin district play Friday when the team travels to North Pike High School.

Davis said the team is focused on executing the game plan and starting district play on the right foot.

The Lady Devils have 10 games left in the regular season; six of those are district games. PRC will face Hattiesburg High School, Picayune Memorial High School and North Pike in district play.

“So far, we haven’t played an easy schedule but when you face Hattiesburg, Picayune and North Pike in consecutive weeks, those games can make or break your season,” LaBella said.

Last season, the Lady Devils struggled in district play but LaBella said he and the team are ready for the challenge this year. 

The Lady Devils will play its next home game Friday, Jan. 12 when the team takes on Picayune Memorial High School. Tip-off for the girls game will be at 6 p.m. and the boys will begin at 7:30 p.m.

“Playing Picayune is always a challenge because they’re a good team and they’re our rivals,” Davis said. “The gym is always full to capacity, it is standing room only and the crowd is loud. It is a fun game to play in.”