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LHS drops 2-pointer to Class A power
Dec 30, 2006 12:00 am
SMYRNA — Setting classifications aside, Class A Clarkrange has made 15 State Tournament appearances, winning seven championships, in the last three decades.
Class AAA Lebanon has won 15 games in the last four seasons, including five this year.
The Devilettes gave the Lady Buffaloes all they could handle as it took a driving layup by Kelli Reed with six seconds to play Wednesday for Clarkrange to claim a 39-37 win in the Smyrna Tournament.
"I saw in the paper where they were the No. 9 team in the state overall and I told our girls, 'You just played the No. 9 team in the state and get beat by two and you shoot 11-for-42 from the field'," said first-year Lebanon coach Darian Brown after his Devilettes dropped to 5-7. "And 30 of those were inside the lane.
"We came out and we executed exactly what we worked on the last two days in practice. We got out on their three-point shooters... We did everything right. It was the same thing that's hurt us all year, it's being able to score some points."
The Lady Buffaloes had to overcome some spotty shooting of their own to improve to 14-1. A lot of the misses were caused by the intimidation of center London Elie, who blocked six shots. But Reed threw in 13 points from inside while Hannah Green dropped in three 3-pointers to match her teammate's total to send Clarkrange to Friday's semifinal.
Lebanon will face the loser of Wednesday's late game between Ezell-Harding and host Smyrna at 1 p.m. today.
"We have to build on this," Brown said. "We just played a team that every year plans on going to the State Tournament, or planning on winning it.
"To come out here and compete against them tonight and take away what they do best and follow the game plan. We did so well... We got a lot of shots we wanted. They just didn't fall."
The Devilettes did get their free throws to fall. Jasmin Brooks, whose layup off a steal tied the game 37-37 in the final minute, bagged all eight from the line to lead Lebanon with 14 points while Crystal Howse hit 8 of 10 on her way to 12. Icelyn Elie added eight points and sister London four.
A follow shot by Howse lifted Lebanon to a 7-4 lead before a fastbreak layup by Green following a steal shot Clarkrange in front 8-7 by the first-quarter break. A three by Green opened a 13-7 advantage.
Lebanon caught Clarkrange 15-15 on Brooks' driving basket midway through the quarter. The lead changed hands a couple of times until Icelyn Elie's inside basket opened a three-point margin. Reed's driving layup brought the Lady Buffaloes within 29-19 by halftime.
Free throws by Brooks and Howse opened a 24-19 Lebanon lead early in the third quarter before back-to-back threes by Green catapulted Clarkrange back in front 25-24 going into the fourth.
Icelyn Elie scored off the glass and Brooks' steal and layup lifted Lebanon ahead 28-25.
But a three-point play by Reed tied the score and Lebanon never led again. A triple by Jessica Green opened a five-point spread.
But the Devilettes stayed close until the steal and layup by Brooks knotted the score 37-37 with 43 seconds left.
A steal by Jessica Green set up Reed's winner.
Wilson Central wears out Morristown West 66-34
GREENEVILLE — Wilson Central shoved Morristown West aside 66-34 Wednesday in the opening round of the Greene County Ladies Classic at Hal Henard Gym.
The Lady Wildcats led 18-5 following the first quarter and 38-16 at halftime as they dropped in five three-pointers, shot 15-of-31 from the floor and committed just two turnovers in the first half.
Central will bring a 12-0 record into today's 4:30 p.m. CST semifinal against Knoxville Webb, which whipped West Greene 81-35 Wednesday afternoon.
Tierney Jenkins' 15 points and eight rebounds led the Lady Wildcats while Jessyca Christopher threw in three 3-pointers on her way to 12. Jasmine Hassell and Sara Williams each knocked down nine points while Lauren Farmer tossed in two triples as she and Chelsea Burroughs scored six apiece and Kelsey McGee, Kristyn Clark and Lauren Wasson three each.
No one scored in double figures for West.
Lady Bears use inside game to pull away from Cobras
NASHVILLE — Mt. Juliet doesn't have the dominant 6-foot inside player like the Lady Bears usually have.
But the ones posting up down low have been just as productive as their predecessors, and in some ways even more.
With the inside game producing at least 35 points, Mt. Juliet gradually pulled away from Whites Creek 71-49 Wednesday in the quarterfinals of the Nashville Civitan Christmas Tournament at McGavock.
Junior Jordan Nixon, coming off a 30-point game against Manassas on Tuesday, followed with 21 vs Whites Creek.
"We're getting a lot of production fron that 5-7 post girl," Mt. Juliet coach Chris Fryer said of Nixon. "She could have had 40 tonight."
Classmate Heather Miller finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. Fryer said she is one of the best inside defenders Mt. Juliet has had.
"She's really athletic," Fryer said of Miller. "She guards well. She anticipates really well on defense. Her offensive game has been pretty consistent."
K.C. VanAtta, the 6-0 senior Trevecca signee who plays outside as much as in, threw in three 3-pointers on her way to 14 while guard Rebecca Sharpe tossed in 12, Chelsea Brown six and Miaca Bowman four as Mt. Juliet advanced to tonight's 8 p.m. semifinal against Christ Presbyterian (an upset winner over Hunters Lane) with a 13-1 record.
DeAnna Fuqua scored 17 points and Porcha Coffee poured in 16 for the Lady Cobras, who stayed within 20-17 following the first quarter, 37-27 at halftime and 56-41 through three periods.
"They came out real hot," Fryer said of the Cobras. "They played well. They shot the ball well early.
"As the game progressed, we started to take control."
Sports Editor Andy Reed can be reached at 444-3952 ext. 17 or by e-mail at email@example.com.