Harding Academy's Claire Cullins defends WCC's Kalista Altom

Harding Academy’s Claire Cullins defends near the basket against White County Central’s Kalista Altom in Saturday’s home victory for the Lady Wildcats.

The Harding Academy Lady Wildcats welcomed in the New Year with a strong offensive performance in a 52-27 victory over the White County Central Lady Bears on Saturday night in Searcy.

The Lady Wildcats dominated the first quarter. They did not allow the Lady Bears a single point in the quarter.

Harding Academy’s size gave them a distinct advantage on the offensive glass, which throughout the first half gave them second-chance points.

The presence of Calle Citty in the middle was a lot for the Lady Bears to handle. In the first quarter she had eight of the Lady Wildcats’ 13 points to go into the second leading 13-0.

“We got some really long kids,” Harding Academy coach Rusty Garner said. “Calle is one of those. She is really learning to use her length to her advantage. I thought she did a really good job with that tonight.”

In the second quarter, WCC started to show offensive signs of life. Kyra Cude had four of the first five points for the Lady Bears to cut the Harding Academy lead to 15-7.

Cude would be the leading scorer for the Lady Bears with eight points.

The Lady Wildcats’ transition offense started to take effect in the last part of the second quarter. Going into the half, the Lady Wildcats led comfortably 25-11.

Harding Academy in the third quarter was able to put its offense into a next gear behind freshman Kloey Fullerton. Fullerton had nine points in the third quarter to help push the Lady Wildcats lead.

Fullerton and Citty both finished their night with 17 points.

“I’ve been working on my confidence for a really long time and perfecting it,” Fullerton said. “As I’ve grown older and got on the senior high team, I’ve gotten really more confident. With the people I play with, [it] is a really big part in that and I know I’ll get good passes. I’ll get my rebounds and I know people will get me open.”

For the Lady Bears, Taylor Moffett led her team with five points in the third quarter but the offense for WCC was just not clicking on this night.

Harding Academy was able to reach the mercy rule early in the fourth quarter.

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