Kenton Ridge girls top Carroll for sectional title


Sara Thornton came like a thief in broad daylight. Six times she timed her move at the top of the zone defense and six times she stole the ball.

All in the fourth quarter.

Thornton also scored 10 points in the fourth to spark Kenton Ridge to a 66-53 victory over Carroll on Saturday in a sectional final and send the Cougars to the district tournament for the fifth straight year.

The Cougars will face Cincinnati McNicholas at 7 p.m. Friday at Mason High School in a district final.

The top-seeded Cougars (24-1) played zone in the second half to close driving lanes and stop fourth-seeded Carroll’s 6-footers. And the Patriots’ young guards weren’t ready for Thornton’s senior smarts in the fourth when her steals helped build a double-digit lead.

“They were just getting sloppy out front and I was like, ‘I’m going to cheat a little bit and steal the ball and go,’” Thornton said. “I just wanted to end it. I didn’t want it to be close. I wanted to prove that we outright deserved to go to districts.”

The Cougars’ only other senior, point guard Stefanie Davis, took a hustle cue from Thornton after missing a layup. She dove from behind to knock the ball loose from the Carroll rebounder before an outlet pass could be thrown. Davis recovered the ball on the floor and passed it to Thornton for a layup for a 54-47 lead with 3:14 left.

“That was a big ‘let’s go, let’s go,’ ” Thornton said.

Then Thornton made steals on three straight Carroll possessions, including one she took in for a layup, and the Cougars led 58-47 with 1:33 left.

“She just did that on her own,” Cougars coach Ed Foulk said of Thornton extending into passing lanes. “She brings senior leadership, and she brings us the hustle out there.”

The Cougars also got the balanced scoring they want. Bates had 18, Davis and Baylee Bennett 16 and Thornton 12.

Playing man-to-man in the first half, the Cougars watched Carroll go on runs of 13-2 and 12-2. Those offset a 14-1 run by the Cougars, and Carroll led 32-28 at the half. But the Patriots, who are used to going to regionals and younger than usual, struggled with KR’s zone in the second half.

“The zone affected us a lot, but the foul trouble probably hurt us more,” said Carroll coach Rob Berry. “We lost our inside presence and they were able to double-team (Schroeder). We hit a few threes, but not enough to keep us in the game.”

The Patriots (17-8) started seniors Madison Schroeder and Stephanie Townsend, both 6-foot-1. But Townsend, coming off a 22-point game, played less than a half because of foul trouble and scored four points. Schroeder scored 14 points and got McDavid in foul trouble.

“We should be having four senior starters and a junior, but we’ve had a lot of injuries and two starters who didn’t even get to play this season,” Berry said. “It’s tough not to win the sectional.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in

Big Ten has gotten pushback over Friday night games
Big Ten has gotten pushback over Friday night games

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany admitted Monday there has been pushback to the conference’s decision to play games on Friday nights, a time traditionally reserved for high school football. Speaking about the issue at the opening press conference of Big Ten Media Days at McCormick Place, Delany said, “It led us to open up even more...
NFL player uses Heimlich maneuver to save man’s life in airport
NFL player uses Heimlich maneuver to save man’s life in airport

Chicago Bears linebacker and former Indianapolis Colt Jerrell Freeman found himself in a serious situation Sunday.  According to the Chicago Tribune, Freeman was eating at a restaurant in Austin’s Bergstrom International Airport when Freeman saw a man in distress.  He performed the Heimlich maneuver twice on a man that was...
Dayton announces non-conference schedule
Dayton announces non-conference schedule

The Dayton Flyers will open the season at home against Ball State on Nov. 10, UD announced Monday. UD last played the Cardinals in 2010. The Flyers lead the all-time series 5-1. Here is a glance at the other games on the 2017-18 non-conference schedule. All the games are known except for the matchups in the Charleston Classic (Nov. 16, 17 and 19)....
Area high school baseball player to receive national award for sportsmanship
Area high school baseball player to receive national award for sportsmanship

Russia High School baseball player Dion Puthoff will receive a Musial Award on Nov. 18 in St. Louis. Puthoff will be honored for his display of sportsmanship in June. He gave the ball hit by Minster’s Jon Niemeyer to drive in the winning run in the state championship game to Niemeyer. Puthoff was the fielder who ended up with the ball as Minster...
Former Dayton guard to play in Turkey
Former Dayton guard to play in Turkey

Former Dayton Flyers guard Rob Lowery will play in Turkey in the 2017-18 season. Lowery signed Sunday with Antalyaspor, a team in the second division. Last season, Lowery played for BC Astana in Kazakhstan. He has also played in Germany, the Czech Republic, Italy, Greece and Latvia. He last played in Turkey in the 2012-13 season. RELATED: Vee Sanford...
More Stories