CATOOSA - After getting their 2011-12 campaign off to a rough start with a pair of losses to top-ranked teams, the Jay Lady Bulldogs broke through in a big way against the Catoosa Lady Indians.
Playing their third straight game on the road to open the season, the Lady Bulldogs jumped out to an early 8-0 lead and never looked back in a 54-29 win.
Jay (1-2) got off to a slow start, hitting only a pair of threes in taking the early lead. But the Lady Bulldog defense was relentless, forcing 10 first quarter turnovers. Once the Lady Bulldogs' shots began to fall, it was all over.
Megan Ritter helped spark a 7-0 run over the last two minutes of the opening period with five of her game-high 13 points, including a three-point play following a turnover to make the score 11-2.
Jay would lead 15-2 heading into the second period. The Lady Bulldogs would only increase their lead over the next four minutes of the game, allowing just one field goal over the first four minutes of the second quarter as they built a 28-5 lead.
Catoosa, which finished with 19 turnovers in the first half and 30 for the game, was able to force some turnovers of their own to spark a 10-3 run to close out the first half trailing 31-15.
The Lady Bulldogs would continue to apply the defensive pressure, forcing seven turnovers and allowing just five points in the third quarter. Megan Edge, who seemed to be in the middle of everything on the defensive end Friday night, scored five of her eight points in the third quarter as Jay stretched their lead to 47-20.
In all the Lady Bulldogs hit seven threes and made 9-of-14 from the free throw line while also outrebounding Catoosa 27-20, winning handily despite committing 24 turnovers of their own.
In addition to Ritter's 13points and eight rebounds, Shalesah Myers added 11 points and Laura Whiteley scored eight, all in the first half. In all, nine Lady Bulldogs scored.
Kayla Hall led Catoosa (0-1) with eight points.
The Lady Bulldogs will compete in the Adair Tournament next week beginning on Monday when they take on Caney Valley at 4 p.m.