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GIRLS' PREP BASKETBALL: Roberts, North Hardin top John Hardin for No. 2 seed (02/03)

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By Nathaniel Bryan

The John Hardin Lady Bulldogs’ best defense against North Hardin’s Chanel Roberts on Friday night was a referee’s whistle. Because no hand in her face or chaser or zone defense could slow down the senior forward.

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The reigning News-Enterprise Girls’ Area Player of Year poured in a season-high 32 points and grabbed 14 rebounds as the host Lady Trojans pulled away for a 64-41 win in what will be a preview of their 17th District Tournament semifinal meeting later this month at Ron Bevars Gymnasium in Radcliff.

Roberts had 17 points before sitting the final 91 seconds of the first half with two fouls and scored her final 15 points after picking up her third foul less than a minute into the second half.

“Sometimes I get too much energy, I guess, and that causes me to pick up my stupid fouls,” Roberts said. “But I also know we’re a much better team when I’m on the floor.”

It’s doubtful the Lady Bulldogs (18-7, 4-4 district) want to see Roberts play much better against them. In the Lady Trojans’ 59-48 road win against John Hardin on Dec. 14, Roberts had 24 points and 20 rebounds.

“Chanel is an amazing player when she’s able to stay on the floor and do her thing and help us win,” said North Hardin senior forward Brianna Edmunds, who chipped in with seven points and eight rebounds.

Roberts, who was 10-of-15 from the field and 9-of-10 from the foul line, was her usual amazing self at the start and end of the game. She scored nine of her team’s first 11 points and eight of its last 11.

Junior forward Morgan Barrick added eight points and five rebounds as North Hardin (19-5, 5-2 district) pounded the Lady Bulldogs on the glass, 36-19. At halftime, John Hardin had nine rebounds as a team, while Roberts had eight by herself.

“When she stays on the floor, she’s as good as it gets,” said second-year North Hardin coach Chris Corder. “But when she’s sitting on the bench and coaching with me, she’s not nearly as effective.”

The rest of Roberts’ teammates were pretty effective, too. In addition to the solid nights from Edmunds and Barrick, junior guards Kiera Jones and Domeneque Taft also shined. Jones had six points, four rebounds and a game-high six assists, while Taft had seven points and three rebounds as all five Lady Trojan starters scored at least six points.

“We got a lot of good minutes out of everyone. I think this was one of our best all-around games of the season and we’ve been kind of waiting for this game to come,” Corder said. “We did a lot of good things tonight, which is good because they’re a good team and in two or three weeks, we have to play them again.”

John Hardin had to beat the Lady Trojans to tie them for the No. 2 seed and earn it based on the second meeting tiebreaker. Instead, North Hardin earned it outright regardless of the outcome of its final district game Monday night at No. 5 seed Fort Knox.

“It’s just one game,” Roberts said. “And even though we still have to play them again, this was good preparation for us and allows us to work on some things that we need to get better at.”

Junior wing Zacchea Small only made one field goal, but still scored a team-high 11 points for John Hardin thanks to her 0-of-11 shooting from the foul line. Senior center Michelle Montgomery added nine points and a team-high six rebounds. Freshman point guard Tyra Jackson had three points and one rebounds before suffering what appeared to be a left shoulder injury in the third quarter. She did not return to the game, but did return to the bench with the shoulder iced down.

The Lady Trojans led by 10 points or more the rest of the way after Barrick hit a jumper off a pass from Taft with 1:17 left in the first half. North Hardin led by four points or more the final 29:56 after back-to-back 3s by Roberts to give her team a 6-2 lead.

“(Roberts) is a good player and right now, they’re better than us and they were the better team tonight,” said veteran John Hardin coach Bryan Todd. “I like the way we battled. I don’t have a problem with the way the girls played. I bragged about them at halftime and I bragged about them in the locker room after the game.

“What happened? I don’t know right now because I’ll have to go home and watch the film,” Todd added. “It was a combination of things I guess and too many to mention.”

UP NEXT: North Hardin plays at Fort Knox at 6 p.m. Monday. John Hardin plays at Caverna at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

Nathaniel Bryancan be reached at (270) 505-1758 or nbryan@thenewsenterprise.com.

 

NORTH HARDIN64

JOHN HARDIN 41

John Hardin              9  11   9    12—41

North Hardin            13  2010    21—64

TEAM STATISTICS

Team                    FG      FT     R     TP

John Hardin       13-39  13-18    19     41

North Hardin      23-47  12-16    36     64

JOHN HARDIN

Player                  FG      FT      R    TP

Jackson               1-4      1-2      1      3

Fletcher                2-4      0-0      3      5

Haley                 3-10      0-1      1      7

Small                   1-5    9-11      3     11

Montgomery          3-7      3-4      6      9

Freeman               0-1      0-0      0      0

Kelly                    0-2      0-0      0      0

Taylor                  1-2      0-0      1      2

Priddy                  1-1      0-0      1      2

White                   1-3      0-0      1      2

Team                                       2       

NORTH HARDIN

Player                  FG      FT      R    TP

Taft                     3-6      0-0      3      7

Jones                  2-6      0-0      4      6

Roberts            10-15    9-10     14     32

Edmunds              3-7      1-2      8      7

Barrick                 3-8      2-4      5      8

Pass                    0-1      0-0      0      0

Jackson               0-1      0-0      0      0

Young                  0-0      0-0      1      0

Stanford               2-3      0-0      1      4

Team                                       0

3-POINTERS: JOHN HARDIN (2-5): Nawdya Fletcher 1-2, Tajah Haley 1-1, Jayla Freeman 0-1, D’Inara White 0-1. NORTH HARDIN (6-14): Kiera Jones 2-5, Chanel Roberts 3-4, Domeneque Taft 1-3, Morgan Barrick 0-1, Zakayshia Pass 0-1. ASSISTS: JOHN HARDIN (7): Nawdya Fletcher3, Zacchea Small 2, Emily Bohannon 1, Tajah Haley 1. NORTH HARDIN (11): Kiera Jones 6, Domeneque Taft 2, Morgan Barrick 1, Brianna Edmunds 1, Tamiah Stanford 1.