The George Rogers Clark girls basketball team notched their first home victory of the season with an 81-39 rout of Paris Friday night at Norton Gymnasium.
Clark broke a two-game losing streak and gave coach Robbie Graham his first win at home as coach of the Lady Cardinals. Unlike the team’s previous outing Thursday night, the Lady Cardinals built a 39-22 lead at the half and put the game away by outscoring the Lady Hounds 35-8 in the third quarter.
The Lady Cardinals knocked down six of their 10 shots from long range in the decisive third quarter, with Lexxus Graham and Paige Hammonds connecting on three shots each from behind the arc. In addition to Clark’s outside shooting, forward Kathleen Murphy provided a boost in the post with 12 points in the quarter. Murphy led all scorers with 17 points.
Sandra Skinner scored 13 points in the opening half and followed Murphy with 14 points, while Hammonds had 12. Lexxus Graham just missed double digits with nine points.
The blowout featured a running clock in the fourth quarter and gave Graham a chance to rest his reserves and clear his bench. Meg Terrell scored six of Clark's eight points in the final eight minutes to pace the team's scoring output.
“After a tough loss (Thursday night), I’m glad we responded well,” Graham said. “We’re showing signs of maturity.¿We had a good first half (Thursday night) and the second half wasn’t the best.¿We came back tonight and we played well.¿We really did.”
M. Southern 62, Clark 55
George Rogers Clark led 25-21 at the half, but couldn’t hold on in a seven-point loss to the Eagles at the Eagles’ Nest in Berea.
The Eagles outscored Clark 16-7 in the third quarter, including the first nine points of the second half and held on to hand the Cardinals their 10th loss of the season.
The contest was close throughout and featured four ties and 11 lead changes.
Despite the poor showing in the third frame, Clark forced eight lead changes and two ties in the final eight minutes and led 51-50, but fell behind after the Eagles connected on back-to-back 3-pointers to create enough spacing down the stretch.
“Those (3-pointers) are a sting when you hit them late, but there were so many other factors that cost us the game,” Clark coach Scott Humphrey said. “It’s incredible how many busted sets we had. This time last year, we had 25 to 30 different sets in. We have three and we’re not moving on until we get those three (perfected). That’s not athleticism, it’s just a complete lack of focus and just totally inexecutable.
“We got exactly what we deserved tonight and that was a loss.”
Clark was led in scoring by forward Khamarkis Blanton with 19 points, followed by Riley Caudill with 13. Malachi Israel just missed double figures with nine points.
Paris 11 11 08 09 — 39
Clark 18 20 35 08 — 81
PARIS (7-4) — Myers 2, Marks 9, Ponce 6, Finch 3, Tye 10, Washington 3, Enlow 6.
CLARK (5-11) — Hammonds 12, Murphy 17, Graham 9, Irvin 4, Hamlin 6, Williams 5, Taylor 3, Skinner 14, Welsh 2, Anderson 3, Terrell 6.
Clark 13 12 07 23 — 55
Southern 09 12 16 25 — 62
CLARK (6-10) — Caudill 13, King 4, M. Israel 9, Greene 3, Cornelius 4, Blanton 19, Sharrock 3.
SOUTHERN (9-5) — Rothermel 21, Linville 5, Abshear 10, Huff 10, Napier 4, Taylor 10, Stone 2
Prep Roundup: Lady Cards get home win, Cards falter at Southern
Sun photo by Bill Thiry George Rogers Clark forward Maddie Hamlin battles Kailee Finch of Paris for a rebound in the Lady Cardinals¿ 81-39 rout of the Lady Hounds Friday night at Norton Gymnasium.