Clarksville, TN – The Kenwood Lady Knights fended off a late rally to win their District 10-AAA tournament quarterfinal match up against the Northeast Lady Eagles, 52-45.
The Lady Knights charged to a solid lead and held it comfortably for three periods. However, nine turnovers in the last period gave the Lady Eagles a chance to rally late in the fourth. The Lady Eagles made three, 3-pointers in the last 89 seconds of the game to get within six points of the Lady Knights. But the lead the Lady Knights had established held for the win.
“We had three quarters where we played really hard, gave ourselves a chance to win. Then at the end it got a little hectic. They hit some big shots to keep it close,“ Lady Knights head coach Corey Bucciarelli said. “We helped them with some turnovers, some younger players coming in, but held it together enough to win. Hit some big free throws to put it away.”
Kenwood defeats Northeast in District 10-AAA Tournament 52-45 (Michael Rios Clarksville Sports Network)
Alonja Thomas led the Lady Knights, scoring a double-double with 20 points and 15 rebounds. She was one of four starters who scored in the game including Analiese Osborne and Katie Robards. Osborne scored 12 and Robards added 10.
“We go as Alonja goes. If she is playing well, we do well. She is a great player and she makes our team go,” Bucciarelli said.
Thomas and the rest of the Lady Knights took control of the game early. Osborne opened up with a 3-pointer and followed it with a layup off a fast break as part of the Lady Knights opening 7-2 run.
The Lady Eagles looked to live or die by the 3-point shot. They constantly worked the ball to their shooters who shot fearlessly from downtown, but found little success early. They made only 3-of-15 shots from the field in the first period.
The Lady Knights kept the Lady Eagles from second chance shots by attacking defensive rebounds.
The Lady Eagles shooting woes continued in the second period. By halftime the Lady Knights led 22-14. Thomas had 12 points and 7 rebounds in the first half.
The Lady Knights ate up the clock and padded their lead in the third quarter. They shot 6-of-18 from the field to score 19 third period points. They had a double-digit, 41-26 point lead going into the fourth period and appeared on their way to an easy win.
But all the 3-pointers the Lady Eagles missed before started finding the net in the last two minutes of the game. Turnovers let the Lady Eagles go on a 8-0 run. Ashanti Henry capped the run with a 3-pointer that was all net, bringing the Lady Eagles within six, 45-39, with 1:19 remaining in the game.
After a timeout, the Lady Eagles started fouling Lady Knights to slow down their offense. They made two more 3-pointers in waning minutes, but the Lady Knights converted 7-of-10 free throws down the stretch to get the win.
The win advances the Lady Knights to the semifinals where they will play either West Creek or Northwest Saturday, Feb. 15 at 7 p.m.
Kenwood 15 7 19 11 – 52
Northeast 6 8 12 19 – 45
Alonja Thomas 20, Analiese Osborne 12, Katie Robards 10, Mikaela Smith 4, Samone James 6.
Jazzmyn Simpson 14, Sepe Moore 7, Shinya Horn 4, Erecha Portis 5, Essence Brown 3, Nataszja Freeman 3, Ashanti Henry 5, Michelle Donner 4.
About Marlon Scott
Marlon Scott is a freelance journalist and writer. He graduated from Austin Peay State University in 2011 with a B.S. in Communications, majoring in Communication Arts with a concentration in print and web journalism. His writing career began as a sports writer for The All State, the APSU student newspaper, in 2006. He continued working for the paper until his graduation, serving in various positions including Sports Editor and Editor-in-Chief.
In 2010, Scott contributed stories and photographs as well as designed and served as Editor-in-Chief for the monograph, Civic Art of Clarksville: The stories behind the pieces.
Scott has also produced 60 stories for The Leaf Chronicle, the local newspaper of Clarksville, TN.
On twitter @theMarlonScott and on FB
SectionsFeatured Story, Kenwood, Northeast
TopicsAlonja Thomas, Analiese Osborne, Clarksville Northeast High School Lady Eagles, Clarksville Northeast Lady Eagles, Clarksville Northeast Lady Eagles Basketball, Coach Corey Bucciarelli, Corey Bucciarelli, District 10-AAA Girls Baksetball Tournament, District 10-AAA Girls Basketball, District 10-AAA Girls Basketball Tournament Quarterfinals, Katie Robards, Kenwood, Kenwood High, Kenwood High Lady Knights, Kenwood High Lady Knights Basketball, Kenwood High School, Kenwood High School Lady Knights, Kenwood High School Lady Knights Basketball, Kenwood Lady Knights, Kenwood Lady Knights Basketball, Kenwood Lady Knights Basketball Coach Corey Bucciarelli, Kenwood Lady Knights Head Coach Corey Bucciarelli, Lady Knights Head Coach Corey Bucciarelli, Northeast High Lady Eagles, Northeast High Lady Eagles Basketball, Northeast High School Lady Eagles, Northeast High School Lady Eagles Basketball, Northeast Lady Eagles, Northeast Lady Eagles Basketball