The East Jackson girls’ basketball team picked up its first win of the season in its final non-region contest before the start of region play.

The Eagles (1-6) beat Hebron Christian Academy 48-36 Tuesday on the road. East Jackson hosts Franklin County, a Final Four team from last year, Friday at 7 p.m.

Having a full lineup certainly helped the Eagles Tuesday.

Maurissa Thomas, who had missed the team’s first five games, scored 13 points and grabbed six rebounds.

“Her presence and experience are key,” coach Donnie Byrom said.

Also key was the play of Kenzie Whitehead, who led East Jackson with 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting and produced a strong floor game with four steals and two assists “and great ball control versus their pressure,” Byrom said.

Jewellee Love’s defensive efforts were crucial as well as the freshman held Hebron’s Ella Heard to just seven points. Heard scored 27 points on Nov. 10 in the Lions’ 64-59 win over the Eagles. Love also scored nine points.

As for the win, Byrom said his team "had a few too many turnovers and that has not been a problem, but our team defense helped lead to better confidence shooting the ball."

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