It may have taken the Hawks a few minutes to get warmed up but, when they did, they certainly brought the heat against Collins Hill High School.
The Lady Hawks went on an 8-0 run before Collins Hill finally notched their first shot of the game with 3 minutes to play in the first quarter.
Mill Creek buried a 3-pointer with less than a minute to play and held on to a 13-3 lead. Madison Phillips completed an effortless floater as time expired at the end of the first quarter. Collins Hill couldn’t seem to get a grip on their shooting which kept them bound to just 3 points at the end of the first.
At the bottom of the second, the Hawks advanced to a 24-12 lead after Shannon McCrosson dished an impressive pass to India Dillard who completed a layup and finished the drive at the foul line. Mill Creek continued to lead the Eagles 25-14 going into the half.
In the third, the Lady Hawks stayed on the fast-track and elevated the score to 40-22. Collins Hill was not able to keep up with the agility of the Hawks and was not as sharp when it came to rebounds and steals; the Hawks punished the Eagles with open looks all night long.
As time began to wind down in the fourth quarter, the seniors were announced as they left the court. The Hawks were lucky enough to have a cozy lead and could afford to let the bench do the rest of the work.
Dillard, who played in her last home game at Mill Creek, scored 17 points while Nadiya Miller, also a senior, finished with 15 points.
When it was time to face the Bulldogs, the Lady Hawks made a statement by holding on to a 1-point lead against the top team in the region and one of the top teams in the state. What was most memorable in that short period of time was the fact that Mill Creek proved they could take North Gwinnett High School out of their element, but not for enough time to win the game.
Both teams exchanged plenty of shots that hit the rim to start but Lexie Brown of North Gwinnett ended the famine with a 2-pointer and the Hawks responded with a 3 to take the lead. However, the remainder of the first quarter belonged to NGHS as the Bulldogs were not as efficient under the basket but managed to take a 14-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
However, the Hawks responded well in the second thanks to Malayshia George and Phillips who contributed to a 1-point lead but the Hawks fell behind by just 1 point at the break.
At the top of the third, the Bulldogs were not satisfied with their 18-17 advantage. Although Mill Creek stayed close by creating turnovers and converting on opportunities to make shots, the Bulldogs retaliated with a shooting spree that was hard to contain.
North Gwinnett continued to put in work on their double-digit lead at the end of the third. A fresh set of minutes couldn’t go by fast enough for Mill Creek who watched their chances of pulling the upset over North Gwinnett crumble in a 58-31 loss.
The Hawks will return to action in the regular season finale at Mountain View High School tomorrow night at 6.