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Big third quarter thumps Karns

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Team effort leads ladies to 52-26 District 3-AAA victory

By Chris Cannon

ccannon@lafollettepress.com

 

The Lady Beavers are obviously a first quarter team.

Coming out of the first quarter, Karns led 13-8 after two big treys by Savannah Pope.

However, following that point, the Lady Beavers could only match their first quarter total as the Lady Cougars went to on take the District 3-AAA game, 52-26.

“I think we finally just kind of got our head focused to play,” Campbell County head coach Ryan Browning said. “There was probably some rust to it, but we just didn’t execute. Basically, the whole first half, there was no execution. We were running around. There was just no rhythm.”

However, the Lady Cougars took at 21-18 lead to the locker room as Karns only field goal came from Karlissa Kertchaval with 39 seconds left in the quarter.

For senior Niki Ward, they just came into the game with the wrong mindset.

“We came out and started playing,” she said. “We came out in the first half thinking we already had the game won. We weren’t playing our game.”

During the third quarter, the rhythm Campbell County was looking for was found.

The Lady Cougars forced nine turnovers in the third quarter, as 11 of its 16 points were scored off of Karns miscues.

To Browning, it was all about the pressure.

“Second half, we came out and pressured them a little bit, and I think it aggravated them,” he said. “I bet they didn’t have six or seven shot attempts that whole third quarter.

“If we can capitalize off those turnovers, that’s where we need to get some easy looks.”

Again, the Lady Beavers could only muster on field goal, as they only managed three points in the third.

However, for Campbell County, things had begun to do a big turn.

Following the third quarter, only three of the 10 Lady Cougars hadn’t managed to put their name in the scoring column.

By the fourth, that changed as each player contributed points in the victory.

“We missed some easy shots and things like that, but I think we got focused,” Browning said. “Leaving the huddle to start the second quarter, I think we calmed down. I said, ‘Just go play ball and relax.’ I think we just got in a rhythm and started to relax.”

One that took that to heart was Kendra King.

King played most of the game from the point guard position, scoring all of her game-leading 11 points after the first quarter. Nine of those came within Campbell County’s second half surge.

“Well, I came out, and I wasn’t doing so hot,” King said. “I came in the second half, and I was ready to play. I knew I was playing bad, and I had to step up.

“We moved the ball a lot better. We were looking for the better shot and trying to get it inside.”

For Browning, it was good to see King moving the ball.

Most of the season, those duties have fallen on Ward. With other players, such as King, taking some of that pressure, it could free Ward up for open shots.

“Kendra, I would like to rotate her more at point guard,” Browning said. “She made a couple of turnovers, but I think she was just in a hurry. It seemed like the gear was in high as she was trying to run it, but I thought she played well. If she can run that point, we can get Nikki some other looks where she doesn’t have to handle the ball.”

Following King’s 11 points was Jamie Mynatt’s 10-point effort for the Lady Cougars (7-9, 3-4 District 3-AAA).

Ward scored nine, as Emily Byrge added six. Megan Caudill had four, while Kristy Owens and Mikaela Smith each finished with three. Amber Guy, Olivia Brown and Chelsey Finkenbine all added two to round out the scoring.

Karns (0-18, 0-8) was lead by Pope’s 11-point outing.

However, the Lady Cougars aren’t done yet.

They have to face off with the Lady Red Devils in Halls on Friday night for another district game. Tipoff is slated for 6 p.m.

To Ward, Campbell County is ready.

“I think come Friday when we play Halls, we’ll be pretty set to go,” she said.