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Jenkins leads Lady Wildcats in title rematch
Dec 18, 2006 12:00 am
GLADEVILLE — It's a new season, but the same old Shelbyville-Wilson Central rivalry.
The 2006 state finalists played another close contest Friday night with Tierney Jenkins turning in another big performance as the defending champion Lady Wildcats overcame the Eaglettes 69-63.
The Alabama-signee totaled 27 points, 13 rebounds and fired in 15 of 17 free throws as the Lady Wildcats climbed to 9-0 while handing the Eaglettes (9-1) their first loss since the state championship game last March.
"We put the ball in Tierney's hands and ran our 1-4 set and some good things happened," Lady Wildcat coach Bud Brandon said. "Our veteran players and even players from last year, they look forward to playing big games. I think it showed tonight. They raised our level of play to where it needed to be. We've been looking forward to this game since the year started.
"It's game one and we're going to play them again. It'll be tough over there. Today's game is an important game, but it's not the most important game. The next time we play (Jan. 27) it'll be even more important and on down the line."
A buzzer-beating three-pointer from Sha'Para Johnson put Shelbyville in front 22-19 at the end of a back-and-forth first quarter. Eaglette center Alex Jarrell, who led the visitors with 22 points, dropped in six straight points to open a 28-19 lead before Central surged back to within 33-32 by halftime on two free throws by Lauren Wasson in the final seconds.
"We pressed a little bit and that sped them up," Brandon said. "They missed some threes and we started scoring.
"Their offense is curtailed for a man-to-man defense and our zone kind of ...they didn't hit very well from outside."
Jasmine Hassell, who threw in 13 points from the post while matched against Jarrell, took a Wasson pass to put Central in front 34-33 for the first time since 8-6.
A triple by Ceny Phelps and three-point play by Jarrell fueled 7-0 Shelbyville run swung the lead back to the visitors 40-34 before Lauren Farmer fired in a three on the other end to help catapult Central toward the lead for good with a 13-0 run. A spin move by Jenkins resulted in a three-point play and a 50-41 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Central led by as much as 12 points on three occasions in the fourth quarter, the last at 61-49, before the Eaglettes used their press to try and get back in the game.
Wasson tossed in 10 points for Central while Sara Williams scored seven, Jessyca Christopher five, Chelsea Burroughs four and Farmer three as the Lady Wildcats connected on 30 of 40 free throws and dominated the glass 34-24.
Phelps fired in 14 points for Shelbyville.
Central will return to action in the Antioch Classic next week. The Lady Wildcats will face Whites Creek in a rematch of last year's sectional at 5 p.m. Thursday. They will take on host Antioch at 8:30 p.m. next Friday.
Sports Editor Andy Reed can be reached at 444-3952 ext. 17 or by e-mail at email@example.com.