Lady Pirates defeat Lafayette Co. in blowout

It was all over but the shouting by haltime of the Drew Central Sr. Girls game Friday night.

The Lady Pirates (16-9, 6-2) turned in a superb defensive effort, running out to a 30-point lead in the first quarter and never looking back to defeat Lafayette County 76-27.

Drew Central led 59-11 at the half.

"Everything went right," said head coach Michael Goad of his team's performance. "We probably played better than we have all year. We played great defensively and we shot the ball really well."

Drew Central worked the ball inside to Gabby Jenkins early on. The junior was fouled in the paint on the Lady Pirates’ first two possessions. She made two of her four free throw attempts to stake Drew Central to a 2-0 lead in the first minute of play.

Jada Lyles then scored eight consecutive points as Drew Central forced multiple turnovers while applying a full court press.

"They don't have a very deep bench," said Goad, "so we wanted to press. We like to play an uptempo game. We got them to play at our tempo, they got tired, and that worked to our advantage."

Drew Central’s full court pressure was relentless, forcing turnovers that led to easy scoring opportunities. By the time Lafayette County notched its first field goal, the Lady Pirates led 24-2 with 2 minutes left to play in the first quarter.

The transition game was a focus in Goad's preparation for the Lady Cougars.

"We worked on fastbreak offense all week," Goad said. "We haven't been pushing the ball in transition enough, but we did really well with that tonight. We got several wide open runout lay ups off turnovers and rebounding the ball well."

All 12 of the girls who dressed out for Drew Central Friday night logged at least a couple of minutes and ten of the 12 scored.

"It was nice to get everyone in," said Goad. "Especially going into the district tournament."

The Lady Pirates locked up second place in regular season conference play with the win.

Shelby Sturgis led Drew Central with 13 points, Lyles and Marisha Mays had 11. Jenkins and Toni Flemister finished with 8 points apiece.

The Advance-Monticellonian

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