New Boston 47, Greenup County 41
by Paul Boggs
The New Boston Lady Tigers improved to 8-3 — getting a nice bounce-back from Thursday night’s loss at Notre Dame by clipping their Bluegrass State neighbor Greenup County.
The Lady Tigers, who drove their “Lexus” on Saturday as in senior standout Lexus Oiler, raced out to a 25-13 advantage with 2:45 remaining in the opening half.
The Lady Tigers held the lead for the final almost 30 minutes, maintaining a lead ranging from four to 12 points over the final 29.
New Boston led 17-11 at the first stop, 28-21 at halftime and 38-32 after three frames.
The lead ranged from four to nine points over the final 11 minutes and 12 seconds, as Oiler amounted all 20 of her points — including a third-quarter three-point goal — through three quarters.
New Boston went to the five-foot nine-inch versatile Oiler early and often on Saturday, as she finished with eight total field goals and 3-of-5 free throws, including six baskets and two freebies for 14 first-half points.
The Lady Tigers and Oiler especially attacked the basket, and her Tiger teammates moved the ball well with the aim of getting her the rock.
“I thought Greenup did a good job of recognizing where she (Oiler) was, but she is just one of those players that is very smart and does a good job of finding the right spot and the right drives and the right shots for us,” said New Boston coach Kayla Wiley. “She is a very good, smart player.”
But Oiler had help both early and late, as fellow senior Taylen Hickman hit two first-half three-pointers towards eight points — and sophomore Kenzie Whitley scored nine of her 11 in the second half, including a three to make it 41-34 with only 5:56 remaining.
“Taylen (Hickman) hit a couple of threes to give us a lift when we weren’t hitting shots in the first half, and Kenzie (Whitley) hit that big three in the fourth quarter when we were struggling to score,” said Wiley.
That started a stretch of five minutes and 23 seconds in which the Lady Tigers held the Musketeers scoreless, as they pushed the lead up to 11 (45-34) — after Sammy Oiler’s steal and layup and Whitley’s mid-range floating jumper in the lane.
The Tigers did miss their first four fourth-quarter free throws, enabling the Musketeers to score seven straight points — including an Emma Frazier three-ball — over two minutes and 10 seconds to slice the deficit to 45-41 with 25 seconds remaining.
However, Sammy Oiler ended the threat — connecting on both of a one-and-one foul-shot situation.
Oiler scored six points, as she also sank two second-stanza free throws — while Shelby Easter added a first-quarter field goal.
Wiley said the win was a total team effort, which began with New Boston beginning the contest by playing with energy.
The Lady Tigers also excelled at turning the Musketeers over, frequently running through the passing lanes.
“I thought we started the game that way, but I just wish we would keep that energy for four quarters. I know it’s hard right now because I’m playing a six-man, sometimes a seven-man rotation. We called a timeout to do a better job of stunting and getting in those passing lanes and being in the driving lanes and helping each other out. I thought we did a much better job of that in the fourth quarter,” said Wiley.
Lexie Carroll with 11 points and Frazier with 10 points paced Greenup County, which fell to 2-6.
The Lady Tigers, which have already completed the first half of their season, are off for 10 days before playing again — on Thursday, Jan. 2 at SOC I rival Western.
Greenup County (KY)
|December 21, 2019||SEO||2019-20|