Lawrence County Alandis Johnson

Lawrence County's Alandis Johnson fights through two Hatton defenders. [CALEB SUGGS/THE DECATUR DAILY]

Coming into the season the defending county champions, the Lawrence County Red Devils, might not have been expected to be the top team in the county. After all they did lose four of five starters from a 27-win team.

However, through two county games, it looks like they’ve picked up where they left off.

The Red Devils defeated Hatton 50-33 on Friday night for their second straight win over a county opponent following a 61-48 win over East Lawrence on Tuesday.

“That’s a pretty good way to start,” Lawrence County coach Gary Steadman said. “We didn’t shoot well last game and didn’t really shoot well tonight, but we made enough shots to get the job done.

The Red Devils jumped on the Hornets early, securing the lead with some superb defensive plays by Ben’Michael Bennett. The junior had several steals, turned them into easy baskets and finished with a game-high 17 points.

“That was huge for us,” Steadman said. “Sometimes we have slow starts but we really got out ahead tonight.”

Bennett agreed.

“They were repeating the same thing and it made it really easy to read,” Bennett said. “I feel like our team answered the call tonight. It wasn’t just one individual.”

Senior Garrett Lee scored 16 points. Briley Kerby led Hatton with 13 points.

“They didn’t do anything we didn’t know was coming. We knew they were going to run that zone and they did it well,” Hatton coach Justin Henley said. “We just haven’t enough reps together yet. We’re young as far as being together, against zone I like to run certain things and we just haven’t had enough time together yet to really get it together.”

Hatton girls 60, Lawrence County 55: Hatton senior Josie Harville, playing her first home game since suffering an ACL injury in the opening game of the 2019-20 season, finished with a team-high 14 points.

“I can’t tell you how much I’ve looked for to this day,” Harville said. “Every game I watched from the bench last year and every day I worked this summer was looking toward this day.”

Lawrence County’s Sadie Thompson led all scorers with 22 points. Jayden Orr had 11 for the Red Devils and Kailyn Quails had 13 for Hatton.

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