HOLDEN - Holden co-head coach Craig Forbes used a timeout 35 seconds into the Lady Rockets' District 7-B Tournament championship game Friday against Mount Hermon.
The timeout served as a wake-up call for his squad.
Jaycee Hughes found Cambree Courtney for a short jumper 25 seconds later and Holden never looked back, cruising to a 57-29 victory in the Holden High gym.
“In the first 30 seconds, we were supposed to be in our zone offense, and he didn’t like what he saw, so he had to set us straight, I guess,” said Hughes, who finished with a game-high 16 points.
Holden (21-10) completed the sweep of the District 7-B regular season and tournament titles, winning for the 15th time in their last 16 games.
The reigning Class B state champion Lady Rockets will learn their playoff opponent on Monday.
The closest Mount Hermon (9-14) got was 4-2 on a Kalei Hughes layup with 4:40 left in the first quarter.
Holden countered with a 10-0 run, starting with layups by Emmeleigh Bertrand and Jaycee Hughes. Courtney, who added 15 points, banked in a jumper, then grabbed a steal and found Taylor Forbes underneath for a 14-2 lead with 1:39 remaining in the period.
Allie Smith hit a jumper and Hughes converted a three-point play off a pass from Forbes, helping the Lady Rockets build a 19-6 lead into the second quarter.
“We’ve played them several times and I felt like we didn’t come out with a lot of energy,” Holden co-head coach Pam Forbes said of the slow start. “I know sometimes kids get distracted and we didn’t come out very strong. I felt like once they woke up a little bit, we did much better.”
Another 10-run, capped by a Courtney layup off a feed from Camille Comish and a Forbes jumper, helped Holden extend its lead to 33-13 at the break.
The Lady Rockets continued to pull away in the third quarter.
Hughes hit two free throws before Courtney scored off a steal in the backcourt to give Holden its biggest lead at 48-15 at the 3:08 mark. The Lady Rockets ed 53-23 going into the final quarter.
Kalei Hughes had 13 points to lead Mount Hermon with Destiny Lewis adding six.
Jaycee Hughes felt her squad is starting to peak at the right time.
“I think at the beginning of the year we really came out and struggled,” she said. “We had a lot of people who left us last year, so I guess at the beginning of the year we were really just rebuilding. But now that we are at the heart of the season where we have to put everything together, everybody has been playing together as a team. I guess we just started a winning streak.
“It’s really big going into the playoffs on a winning streak, on a roll,” she said. “We know what we are going to do every play and hopefully we play together as a team. We have a lot of young kids who are starting this year and are going to have to step up that really haven’t had to be on a big platform. It’s going to be really, really big that all the younger kids know that, not only the upperclassmen, but they also will have to step up and play their hardest game.”
The News is interested in your feedback! Please tap here to leave some thoughts on our feedback form or follow this link: