The Lady Wildcats had a great first half, on both offense and defense, and sophomore Jasmine Hembry “stepped up huge” for Oak Ridge in the second half, Coach Paige Green said after a Thursday night 63-42 win over Powell.
“Offensively, we were strong,” Green said. “We took it to the defense.”
After a Tuesday night game against Anderson County, Green had said she wants her team to take shots or take the ball to the basket, even if players have their shots blocked or pick up an offensive charge.
“We’ve got to have the scoring mentality,” Green said then.
On Thursday, the Lady Wildcats (18-3, 12-0 District 3-AAA) appeared to respond. They led 36-17 at halftime, and they made 10 of 11 free throws in the first half.
Oak Ridge, which is undefeated in the district, was led by freshman point guard Jada Guinn, who scored 15 points, and sophomore post Mykia Dowdell, who had 13.
The Lady Panthers slowed Oak Ridge’s momentum in the third quarter, when Powell (10-11, 9-3) outscored the Lady Wildcats 18-11.
And Oak Ridge played late in the game without Dowdell, who had five fouls.
But Hembry scored 10 of her 12 points in the second half. Hembry showed she can hit the short jump shot and post up, in addition to scoring three-pointers, Green said.
“Jasmine Hembry stepped up huge for us in the second half,” Green said.
Guinn scored seven points in the second half, or about half her total.
Oak Ridge junior guard Courtney Ellison was also in double digits for the Lady Wildcats, adding 10 points total.
Powell was led by sophomore guard Haley Schubert, who had a game-high 22 points. Junior wing Madison Tidmore scored eight, and junior wing Kaitlyn Lentz, who also picked up five fouls, added seven.
The Lady Wildcats ended a seven-game losing streak to Powell in their first meeting this season, a game that Oak Ridge won 55-43 on December 8.
Oak Ridge plays Gibbs (4-14, 3-8) at home tonight (Friday, January 29) at Wildcat Arena. The girls game starts at 6 p.m., and the boys game begins at 7:30.
The Lady Wildcats have five games left in the regular season and three at home.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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