By G. MICHAEL GRAHAM
Fort Thomas Matters Sports Reporter
The Newport Central Catholic Thoroughbreds girls basketball team added a tournament championship to this remarkable season Sunday.
The undefeated 10-0 Thoroughbreds won the Gateway Holiday Classic at Montgomery County with a 63-48 win over the Ashland Kittens (6-3). The three tournament wins came against teams with winning records.
“We beat a good basketball team,” said George Stoll, NewCath Head Coach. “The reason why we’re so successful is we play as a team. We’re so balanced.”
NewCath’s dynamic post duo recorded double-doubles. Junior Alexus Mayes had 21 points and 12 rebounds and senior Nikki Kiernan had 12 points and 13 rebounds.
But players like Sarah Neace also made a difference. Neace keyed a run in the second quarter with two three-pointers off the bench. Teammates Ansley Davenport and Michaela Ware followed with nine and seven points respectively.
NewCath made four three-pointers and hit 17-of-24 free-throw tries for 71 percent. Ashland hit three triples and made 13-of-16 free throws for 81 percent.
NewCath forced 15 Ashland turnovers. Point guard Alexis Robinson led the Kittens with 21 points. Colorado and Purdue have offered her scholarships.
“We were more conservative with our press,” Stoll said. “We didn’t double (Robinson) because she can see over top of them.”
NewCath begins a tough stretch Friday against Highlands (8-2). Game time is 7:30 p.m.
Crescent (S.C.) 49, Highlands 40:
The Bluebirds (0-6) are still searching for their first win of the season falling for the second straight day in the Cumberland Falls Invitational Tournament at Corbin.
Brandon Hergott again led Highlands with 13 points. Teammate Parker Harris had eight points and five rebounds.
The Bluebirds conclude the tournament today at 5:30 p.m. against Chesenee (S.C.).
Lexington Lafayette 57, Newport Central Catholic 55:
The Thoroughbreds (7-3) held a 16-point lead late in the third quarter against the third-ranked Generals (8-4), but could not hold it in the semifinals of the Republic Bank Classic at Lexington Catholic.
NewCath posts Ben Weyer and Drew McDonald had big games. They scored 19 each.
The Thoroughbreds will play the Knott Country Central Patriots (9-1) in the third-place game today at 6 p.m.