Lafayette opened the regional tournament with a bang Tuesday night.
Now a big-time matchup with Franklin County awaits.
Junior Dee Givens scored 11 of her 26 points during a 21-4 run to open the game, helping LHS rout Scott County 70-51 in the opening round of the 11th Region Tournament at the Frankfort Convention Center.
“We didn’t let up in the game,” said Givens, who shot 11 of 17 and had five rebounds and seven steals. “We just knew what we needed to do.”
The Lady Generals (25-3), ranked 6th in the Herald-Leader’s Cantrall Ratings and 11th in the Associated Press state poll, have won 15 of their last 16 games.
Their latest win sets up a rematch with Franklin County (25-6; 4th in Cantrall, 13th in AP) in the semifinals Saturday at 1:30 p.m. FCHS beat Madison Southern, 60-41, in the first game Tuesday night.
“We’re going to execute our game plan like we’ve always done. We played them in December — it’s March now and we’re a completely different team,” said LHS coach Allison Denton, whose team beat FCHS 58-56 back on Dec. 10 and 66-55 in last year’s semifinals. “We’re going to focus mostly on what Lafayette needs to do. We know what Franklin County can do.”
Freshman Kiara Pankins made 16 of 18 from the foul line to finish with 16 points for the Lady Generals, who were 25 for 43 from the free-throw line (the Lady Cardinals were just 9 of 15). Senior Ken’yale Demus scored 10 points and 6-foot-4 junior Ashanti Thomas added eight points and nine rebounds.
“We had a game plan going into it and we executed it for the most part,” Denton said. “We’re going against a team that’s No. 1 in the state in rebounding and you can tell why they are (SCHS only outrebounded LHS 38-35).
“We were talking about making the extra pass in our offense. Teams that play us normally have to make a choice — you’re going to guard the bigs, you’re going to guard the guards. Well our guards were wide open on the 3-point line, so they wanted that 3-point shot. If they’re going, that’s fine.
“But when we’re not rebounding or getting second opportunities, it’s not a good thing. So we were talking about moving the ball a couple more passes ... and a couple times we did that and good things happened for us.”
LHS opened the game by scoring 21 of the first 25 points and led 23-10 after the first quarter.
SCHS went on an 18-5 to pull within 26-22 late in the second quarter, but LHS closed the half with a 9-2 run and cruised from there.
Senior Danielle DeFoor had 14 points and seven rebounds before fouling out for the Lady Cardinals (17-12). Senior Tereka Guyn finished with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while senior Rachel Young added 10 points and six assists.
SCOTT CO. (51) — Rachel Young 10, Peyton Riddle 9, Tereka Guyn 10, Daniell DeFoor 14, Sydney Southerland 4, Iman Guy 4.
LAFAYETTE (70) — Dee Givens 26, Megumi Nagahiro 5, Ken’yale Demus 10, Kiara Pankins 16, Sarah Cooley 5, Ashanti Thomas 8.