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Lady Lions turn lights out on Waco University, 79-58

Polk produces epic performance in district road win
The Lady Lions might not ever need to play in a primary gym again after their performance this week.
On Tuesday, Ennis (13-3, 2-0) dominated Midlothian at home (60-29) in its secondary gym after a scoreboard malfunction on the main court. During JV action on Friday night, the power went out at Waco University and after a lengthy delay the varsity contest had to be moved into the Trojans’ secondary gym.
It wasn’t what coach David Kilpatrick or his players expected on the bus ride down I-35, but their play on the court was stellar nevertheless. Ennis won the first and fourth quarters by a combined margin of 47-21 to leave no doubt against University in a 79-58 victory.
“The kids from Waco University were going crazy screaming and yelling when the lights went out during the power outage and it was kind of a nervous situation, but our team dealt with the distraction and came out on fire in the first quarter; it was a pleasant surprise,” said Kilpatrick.
“The side gym definitely had a much slicker floor than what we’re used to and it had soft rims. You could tell Waco U was used to practicing in there because they shot the ball extremely well.”
The Lady Lions benefited from the team’s best individual performance in recent history as Sharna Polk was a monster with 30 points – including six three-pointers, six rebounds, eight assists and two steals. Ennis also enjoyed double-figure scoring by Ashley Lewis (13 points, 8 rebounds), Emily Rejcek (11 points, 6 rebounds) and Allie Rokas (10 points, 3 rebounds, 4 steals). Other players to make their way onto the stat sheet included Brittney Washington (8 points, 5 steals), Hannah Farris (3 points), Tina Anderson (2 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals) and Latericka Cox (2 points).
In the first quarter, Polk and Rejcek each scored seven points as the Lady Lions took command for a 22-9 advantage.
“University came out in man defense; we got any shot we wanted,” the coach said.
“Emily had a big size advantage inside. You could tell Sharna was feeling it early and she was consistent throughout. Defensively, our press was working and we had a lot of first-quarter steals so that University didn’t get many shots early.”
The Trojans played much better in the second quarter to win it 19-16 and they might’ve closed the gap further if not for 10 points from Polk (two threes). Washington attacked the basket to score four points of her own in the frame.
“Brittney played hard tonight at both ends of the court,” Kilpatrick said.
“We had some defensive lapses and it just wasn’t a good [second] quarter for us.”
University also won the third quarter 18-16 as Polk scored five and Lewis scored seven.
Kilpatrick said Lewis really picked up her defensive intensity and she was working the offensive boards for putbacks.
“Waco U did a much better job of breaking our press in the second and third quarters,” he said.
“We did let our guard down a little bit. Our half-court defense wasn’t as good as it should’ve been; we had a lot of trouble getting traction on that floor and it was a problem for the aggressive defense we play.
“I do think our effort was still good over those middle quarters. University cut it down to a five-point game late in the third, but we maintained our composure.”
Just as they’d done early in the contest, the Lady Lions had their way in the fourth quarter 25-12. Polk scored eight, while Lewis and Rokas each scored six as Ennis piled up the fast-break points.
“We finally wore them down and the press started working again,” the coach said.
“We created a lot of turnovers for easy baskets. Ashley and Allie play the same position, so they’re usually not in the game together. Tonight, both were playing so well in the second half that I put Allie at guard so they could play together – those two were all over the place defensively and running the floor on offense.
“Tina had a lot of steals tonight, but she also worked the boards and altered some shots. That’s her specialty.”
Considering Polk put up numbers an NBA all-star would be proud of, Kilpatrick had plenty of praise for his junior point guard.
“Sharna had one of the best all-around games I’ve seen in years,” he said.
“Her shot was obviously falling, but she also had eight assists and it could’ve been a lot more if we didn’t miss several transition attempts in the first half. A triple-double wasn’t out of the question. She’s really picking it up the last couple of games with her scoring and floor leadership – I’m impressed.”
The Lady Lions now take a break for the holidays, but they’ll return to the court on Dec. 29 as they begin the Mansfield Rotary Invitational. Ennis will open up with an 8 a.m. ballgame against Amarillo at Mansfield High, and then play a second game at 4:45 p.m. regardless of its initial result.
“We had two district games we expected to win and we got the job done with a workmanlike effort,” Kilpatrick said.
“There will be some tough games in store for us at the Mansfield tournament. We want to win, but the key is that it’s good practice so we can improve before district play starts up again.”

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Posted by on Dec 22 2008. Filed under Editorials. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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