Craig Harris/Macon County Times Macon County High junior guard Keeley Carter elevates for a second-quarter shot over DeKalb County’s Kadee Ferrell as classmate McKaylee Mix (42) looks on. Carter scored a game-high 21 points in the Tigerettes’ 61-36 victory on Friday evening.

Craig Harris/Macon County Times

Macon County High junior guard Keeley Carter elevates for a second-quarter shot over DeKalb County’s Kadee Ferrell as classmate McKaylee Mix (42) looks on. Carter scored a game-high 21 points in the Tigerettes’ 61-36 victory on Friday evening.

Macon County High junior forward Marah King was racing against time following Friday evening's 61-49 victory over visiting DeKalb County at Nera White Gymnasium.

King was racing to Gallatin, to watch her older brother -- Heston King (a 2018 Macon County High graduate) -- play for the Volunteer State Community College basketball squad.

"He comes to my games and tells me what I do wrong and what I can improve on," Marah King said.

Earlier, King and her teammates were hurrying up and down the court in a fast-paced first half in which the Tigerettes gradually built a comfortable lead.

"It helps us a lot," King said of the pace. "The atmosphere tonight was great and pushed us to go even harder."

Six early points from junior guard Keeley Carter helped Macon County out to a 12-2 lead.

However, the Lady Tigers pulled back to within three points when Maddison Parsley converted on a transition layin with 26 seconds remaining in the first period.

"In the first quarter, we let them get loose," Macon County head coach Larry White said. "We corrected that. Our defense tonight was as good as it could be."

DeKalb County (12-6 overall, 4-2 in District 8-AA) managed just six point s in the second stanza.

"I feel like we're in as good of shape as anybody, if not better," White said. "We really wear on people."

Sophomore point guard Jalynn Gregory scored half of her 18 points in the second stanza, helping the Tigerettes extend the lead to 16 points (37-21) by halftime.

A Carter basket and a 3-pointer from sophomore Abby Shoulders opened the third-quarter scoring, creating a 21-point margin.

King scored the final basket of the third period and the opening basket of the fourth quarter, pushing the margin to 55-31.

DeKalb County -- a perimeter-oriented team -- shot just 28 percent from the field, made just 2 of 19 3-pointers and connected on only 4 of 12 free-throw attempts.

"We were really trying to get them to not shoot threes as much," King said. "We wanted to guard them when they get the ball and limit them."

Macon County (17-4, 6-0) shot 45 percent from the field and made 19 of 28 free-throw attempts.

"We did a good job of executing and passing the basketball," White said.

Carter finished with 21 points, 10 rebounds, 4 steals, 3 assists and 2 blocked shots, while Gregory provided 18 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals.

Lydia Brown led the Lady Tigers offensively with 16 points, and Kadee Ferrell contributed 10 points and 13 rebounds.

DeKalb County captured a 78-68 victory over previously-unbeaten White County one week earlier. The Lady Tigers' only district loss came last Tuesday, a 46-29 setback to defending state champion Upperman.

"The freshman (Ferrell) makes them a lot better," White said. "I was really pleased with our scouting report. I was really pleased with our defense."

With a showdown against Upperman looming following the DeKalb County contest, the Tigerettes were attempting to remain focused on DeKalb County.

"We didn't have a very good game when we played them (DeKalb County) last year," King said. "We knew what we had to improve on and were just focused on this game."

White added, "That's been our focus the whole week ... that old adage ... one game at a time. We were excited about tonight. We've had good practices (recently)."

Following the Upperman game, Macon County plays at Smith County on Friday evening.

Macon County girls 61, DeKalb County 36

DEKALB COUNTY (36) – Lydia Brown 16, Kadee Ferrell 10, Maddison Parsley 4, Mallori Hart 2, Joni Robinson 2, Mya Ruch 2.

MACON COUNTY (61) – Keeley Carter 21, Jalynn Gregory 18, Marah King 7, Jamie Ashburn 6, Abby Shoulders 6, Emily Ashburn 2, Briea Crouch 1.

Half: 37-21, Macon County. Three-point goals: DeKalb County 2 (Brown 2), Macon County 4 (J. Ashburn 2, Gregory 1, Shoulders 1). Records: DeKalb County 12-6 overall, 4-2 in District 8-AA; Macon County 17-4, 6-0.