• Bill Caine, Woodford Sun Sports

Lady Jackets remain undefeated after district win

JUNIOR FORWARD NIA JACO attempts a layup in the first half against Thomas Nelson High School on Saturday, Dec. 2. The Lady Jackets won the game 60-47. (Photo by Bill Caine)

ABBIE HUDSON AND NIA JACO trap a Western Hills ball handler in the Lady Jackets win over the Lady Wolverines on Tuesday, Dec. 5.(Photo by Bill Caine)

The Lady Jackets beat Western Hills 54-44 on Tuesday, Dec. 5. The game was played at Western Hills High School and was the first district game of the season for the Lady Jackets. The Jackets were able to survive a trapping defense by the Lady Wolverines and then managed to beat a full court press and secure the game by hitting clutch free throws in the final minutes.

Both teams started the first quarter shooting poorly. The Lady Jackets forced the Lady Wolverines into bad passes but were unable to convert the extra possessions into points. Sophomore Delaney Enlow was reliable with a pair of baskets and also made a free throw. The Lady Jackets led 9-6 at the end of the first quarter.

The second quarter was similar to the first. The Lady Jackets defense was tremendous stopping the Lady Wolverines nearly every possession only allowing six points in the quarter. Sophomore Kasey Abel made a pair of free throws and Enlow blocked a shot near the end of the half that sent the ball flying across the court. Woodford led 17-12 at halftime.

The Lady Jackets defense continued to dominate in the third quarter. Enlow was a force in the post. The Lady Wolverines had no solution for Enlow's size and skill down low. A scary moment took place in the third quarter when Junior Nia Jaco collided with a Lady Wolverines player on the floor diving for a loose ball. Jaco was helped to the sideline but would later return to the game. Western Hills continued to use full court pressure but senior point guard Peyton Rose was able to break the pressure and settle into the offensive game plan. The Lady Jackets led 30-22 at the end of the third.

“It feels great to win a game like this,” said Abby Moffett. “This was not an easy game and I think in the second half we got our heads screwed on right and were able to play basketball our way.”

In the fourth quarter, Enlow was dominant again scoring in the paint and making defensive plays to stop the Lady Wolverine attack. Western Hills made a pair of threes and closed its deficit to single digits for the first time in the fourth quarter. Peyton Rose took the game over at the free throw line with time running down and the Lady Wolverines needing to foul. Enlow led all scorers with 23 points and Rose had 13.

“This one was tough because I know we can be better than this.” said Coach Steve Jaco. “Give Western Hills credit, they made us work for it tonight. Anytime you come on the road and win a district game, you can find something to be happy about. We'll see what happens Friday night with Franklin County coming to our gym.”

Thomas Nelson

The Lady Jackets defeated Thomas Nelson High School 60-47 on Saturday, Dec. 2. Woodford won the game with defensive pressure that allowed them to pull away in the fourth quarter. The Lady Jackets had a balanced attack with three starters in double digits.

The game started off without a jump ball due to an administrative technical foul called on the Lady Jackets. The Lady Generals hit both free throws and the Lady Jackets tied the game with a pair of Abbie Hudson free throws. Moffett hit a wide open three-pointer and the Lady Jackets went into half-court pressure. The Lady Generals broke the pressure and scored a layup. The Lady Jackets were driving to the basket early on and getting fouled often. Woodford's free throw shooting was not sharp to start the game and the Lady Jackets were not able to capitalize at the line. Delaney Enlow was terrific in the paint. Enlow had multiple offensive rebounds to keep possessions alive for the Lady Jackets in the first quarter.

The Lady Generals started the second quarter with a pair of baskets in the paint to cut the Woodford lead to three points. Enlow scored a pair of baskets in the post on the following two possessions for the Lady Jackets. The next time down the court, the Lady Generals defense trapped Enlow and she found a wide open Hudson for a three. Hudson hit another three-pointer on the next possession and Woodford led 32-18 prompting a time out by the Lady Generals. The Jackets took a 34-23 lead into the half.

In the second half, the Lady Jackets went back to rebounding with Hudson collecting the Enlow miss, she scored while being fouled. Hudson made the free throw and the Lady Jackets led by 14. The Lady Generals slowly crept back into the game with solid shooting by Keleigh Fritz who had a big second half. Moffett hit a big three-point shot in the last minute of the third quarter to slow down the Lady General comeback. The Lady Jackets led at the end of the third 45-37.

In the fourth quarter, the Lady Generals picked up their intensity and cut the lead to five points with four minutes to go in the game. The Lady Jackets responded by making a pair of layups and creating pressure that forced turnovers. The Lady Jackets made free throws down the stretch to finish off the Lady Generals and start the season 3-0. Sophomore Kasey Abel had nine rebounds to lead the Lady Jackets and Hudson led in scoring with 15 points.

F. Douglass

On Friday, Dec. 1 the Lady Jackets won 50-44 on the road at Frederick Douglass High School. The game was a tightly played match up and the Lady Jackets came back from a double digit deficit in the second half to win. Scoring leaders were Enlow with 17 points and Hudson with 16. Enlow and Nia Jaco had 13 rebounds each in the game.

“This was one of those games that we will look back on that tells us exactly who we are as a team,” said Jaco. “We were up against it and they chose to fight back and be the aggressor. We aren't the biggest team in the state but these girls all fight hard and want to win. When we have girls diving on the floor or keeping our possession alive, it fires up the bench and the girls want to be put in the game. That fuels their fire.”

The Lady Jackets host Franklin County on Friday, Dec. 8 at Woodford County High School.

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