Staley’s girls basketball team wasn’t shy about the fact it was looking for revenge in Monday’s matchup against North Kansas City at the Time Warner Cable SportsChannel Showcase at the Sprint Center.
By KATHLEEN GIER
The Kansas City Star
One year ago, Staley lost in heartbreaking fashion when freshman Selena Salas banked in a 26-foot three-pointer and gave North Kansas City to a one-point victory.
Although Monday’s game didn’t have the same theatrics, Staley relished its 55-47 victory all the same.
“This was really a time for redemption,” Staley senior point guard Monique Townson said. “We lost on a buzzer-beater last year, so I feel like we had so much to prove. Also, with this being a conference game, this was a really big win for us.”
Staley, which is scheduled to play four games this week, snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 6-5. North Kansas City dropped to 7-5.
Staley started to pull away late in the third quarter with a 9-1 run that included seven points from Townson. But Salas and senior guard Aries Washington scored eight straight points, and the Hornets tied the game 42-42. Staley used another 10-2 run, with back-to-back three-pointers by Townson and junior guard Maddie Ferrara, to secure the victory.
“We were trying to get up and pressure on Washington and then get some penetration on offense,” Staley coach Sherry Butts said. “We tell our girls every day in practice that we believe in you taking those shots, so go ahead and take them. Boy, they took them on a big stage today.”
Townson led all scorers with 30 points, including three three-pointers and a nine-for-11 performance from the free-throw line. Her teammate Senior guard Saije Buck added 10 points.
Washington led North Kansas City with 16 points.
Lincoln Prep girls 60, Ruskin 40
Lincoln Prep got 27 points from senior forward Annie Dewberry in its victory over Ruskin.
“My teammates did a really good job of getting me the ball,” said Dewberry, who will play next season at Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. “I felt confident hitting the gaps when they were playing zone and we ran our offense well.”
After trailing by as many as 18 points in the first half, Ruskin cut the lead to 10 in the beginning of the fourth quarter. Lincoln Prep responded with an 8-0 run and put away the game.
Senior guard Erione Gant led the Eagles with 15 points.
Senior forward Ashley Morris added 18 points for Lincoln Prep.
Wyandotte boys 66, East 56
Entering Monday’s game, Wyandotte needed a victory to end a three-game losing streak and turn the season in the right direction.
With a combined 39 points from junior guards Theodore Bass and Deionta Nunnally, Wyandotte did just that against East and improved to 3-8.
“We moved the ball pretty well and guys were getting good shots,” Wyandotte coach Marshall Draper said. “We weren’t just making one pass and shooting, but were skipping it around two or three times and attacking the basket.”
Bass led Wyandotte with 21 points, and Nunnally and junior forward Markeise Hall added 18 and 11, respectively. Sophomore guard Kevin Coulter led East with 20 points, including a game-high five three pointers.
Lincoln Prep boys 62, Central 57
Going into Monday’s meeting, Lincoln Prep had just two losses and Central had only two victories, but Lincoln Prep coach Sean Pearson warned his kids that records don’t matter in league play.
Lincoln Prep led by as many as 10 points in the third quarter but had to fight off a late rally by Central.
“The fourth quarter was a dogfight,” Lincoln Prep senior forward Justin Dixson said. “We had some huge plays from big time people that contributed to the win.”
Micah Smith led a balanced attack by Lincoln Prep with 13 points, followed by 12 from Jonathan Reese. Ramar Brown scored a game-high 15 points for Central.