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11TH DISTRICT GIRLS' BASKETBALL: Lady Waves roll into title game (02/19)

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By Josh Claywell

LEWISPORT — To the Meade County Lady Waves, Monday was just like another day of practice.

They worked on every play in their arsenal and fine-tuned things ahead of Thursday’s Girls’ 11th District Basketball Tournament championship game against tournament host Hancock County.

All 14 players on top-seeded Meade County’s roster scored as the Lady Waves rolled to an 89-22 win over fourth-seeded Cloverport Frederick Fraize.

“I think it really helps with our chemistry, because that’s all you can really work on in a game like this,” said sophomore guard Morgan Turner, who scored eight points. “We were fully able to execute our plays.”

Knowing how wide the talent gap was between the Lady Waves (20-9) and Lady Aces (1-20), that’s exactly what longtime coach Josh Hurt wanted to see from his team.

“What I told them in the locker room was it wasn’t about tonight,” Hurt said. “We knew what tonight would be. We got our 20th win, and that’s a nice accomplishment. … We’ve got a chance to put ourselves in good position for the regional draw, so tonight is what it is. We’re happy to be moving on and we feel like we have a chance to go out Thursday and do something special.”

Like win their sixth district title since moving to the 3rd Region in the 2005-06 season. But the Lady Waves know it won’t come easy against the second-seeded Lady Hornets, who topped third-seeded Breckinridge County, 55-43 in Monday’s late semifinal.

“I’d rather face Hancock because I want to beat them again,” Turner said. “Obviously, we need to shut down Beth Rates – and that’s been a struggle for us. I think sometimes we over-think it. If we just go out there and play our game, we’ll be fine.”

Before watching the second semifinal, Hurt said it didn’t matter which of those team advanced. He said both Breckinridge County and Hancock County have a size advantage inside.

“It’s going to be a matter of stopping the inside game,” Hurt said. “And both teams have shooters on the perimeter that you have to get to. If you help too much in the post, then they stand around and shoot the 3 and beat you that way. I think, in either event, pressure is going to be part of the formula. We’re going to have to cause turnovers and prevent shots. If it’s a low-turnover night and the other team gets a bunch of shots, we’ll be in trouble.”

That wasn’t the case Monday.

Meade County led 27-0 before Frederick Fraize hit 1-of-2 technical foul shots with 2:44 left in the first quarter. The Lady Waves were given a technical because senior guard Alexis Greco, who had five points and three rebounds, wasn’t listed in the official book.

Meade County led 36-1 after the first and 53-8 at the half – which ensured the second half would be played under the running clock.

None of Meade County’s starters – Turner, senior center Maya Luney, junior guards Raley Johnson and Katelyn Cucino and sophomore guard Addi Lynch – played more than 8 minutes. Luney led the Lady Waves with 12 points, while Johnson scored 10.

Senior forward Megan Aebersold, junior guard Ellie DeVries and freshman center Karissa Reader each scored eight, while junior forward Autumn Bruner scored seven.

Senior forward Allison Brown led Frederick Fraize with eight points, while freshman guard Jessica Noblett scored seven. Fourth-grader Kaitlyn White scored four in the fourth quarter.

“That’s a great moment for her,” Hurt said. “Some people play their whole lives and don’t score that many points in a district tournament. For her to get her four in the district, we’re proud and pleased for her. It was special for her and a nice way to top off the night.”

MEADE COUNTY 89, FREDERICK FRAIZE 22

Frederick Fraize      1      7      5      9—22

Meade County     36     17     24    12—89

Frederick Fraize (1-20)

Allison Brown 8, Jessica Noblett 7, Kaitlyn White 4, Megan White 2, Allie Atwood 1. FG: 9-43. FT: 2-6. 3-pointers: 2-12 (Noblett 1-5, Brown 1-4, Kayla Nix 0-3). Rebs: 14 (Noblett 6, M. White 3). Assists: 2 (M. White 1, Atwood 1). Steals: 2 (Noblett 2).

Meade County (20-9)

Maya Luney 12, Raley Johnson 10, Megan Aebersold 8, Karissa Reader 8, Ellie DeVries 8, Morgan Turner 8, Autumn Bruner 7, Elissa Youart 6, Katie Wilson 6, Alexis Greco 5, Katelyn Cucino 4, Kelsey Sutton 3, Lauren Claycomb 2, Addi Lynch 2. FG: 38-60. FT: 6-9. 3-pointers: 7-14 (Johnson 2-3, Wilson 2-2, Bruner 1-2, Greco 1-2, Sutton 1-2, Turner 0-2, DeVries 0-1). Rebs: 31 (Aebersold 6, Claycomb 5). Assists: 21 (DeVries 4, Claycomb 3). Steals: 9 (Cucino 3, Johnson 2).

UP NEXT: Meade County plays Hancock County at 8 Thursday night in the championship of the 11th District Tournament at Hancock County.

Josh Claywell can be reached at (270) 505-1752 or jclaywell@thenewsenterprise.com.