Dedication to defense has the Centertown Lady Warriors one win away from a co-championship in the regular season of the Warren County 7-8 grade league.
Centertown held down Morrison, which features three of the top 10 scorers in the league, to win 28-22 Monday. The victory was the fifth straight for the Lady Warriors, who are now 10-1 this season.
The Lady Eagles, now 7-4, entered the game reliant on Miranda Medley, Jenna Newby and Jayla Garibaldi for their offense, but Centertown made sure from the opening tip to set the tone that points would be hard to come by.
The Lady Warriors blanketed Morrison’s big three, sending waves of defenders at the trio anytime they entered the paint. The strategy worked wonders early as Morrison was held scoreless in the first quarter.
Kennedi Pegg made sure Centertown got off to a good start, splashing an early 3-pointer. The Lady Warrior point guard hit a second triple to start the second period, then added two free throws as Centertown took a 14-7 halftime lead.
Garibaldi’s three-point play and a jumper by Newby kept Morrison within striking distance in the third quarter, but Centertown countered with five points from Krista Chisam to lead 19-16 entering the final six minutes.
Medley tightened up the scoreboard by draining a 3-pointer in the fourth, but it was her lone points as she watched most of the final minutes from the bench after picking up her fifth foul. Newby, who finished with six points, also fouled out in the final minutes, as did Kiara Blevins, who had four points for the Lady Eagles.
Morrison’s barrage of fouls sent Centertown to the line 14 times in the final quarter. The Lady Warriors were just 5-of-14 at the charity stripe late, but three late makes by Chisam held off the Lady Eagle attack.
Chisam finished with a game-high 13 points, 11 coming in the second half. Pegg finished with eight, followed by Allie Melton, Abby Fann and Shelby Ford with two points each and Emma Miller with one.
Garibaldi finished with six points for Morrison, matching Newby for the team lead. Hailey Childress added three.
Centertown will get a chance to force a tie atop the standings Thursday when it takes on undefeated Manchester Westwood at home. The Lady Warriors fell 30-22 to the Lady Rockets in the previous matchup. Thursday’s tip-off is set for 6 p.m.