Washington County @ Central Hardin
Score: 63-59 Washington County
When: Monday, Feb. 11
Where: Central Hardin High School
Key players: WCHS - Kenya Turner, Nic Brizendine
Game highlights: The Washington County girls (13-11) were stunned on the road at Central Hardin (5-21) on Monday night, losing a 63-59 decision that snapped the Commanderettes’ three-game winning streak.
WC appeared to be headed in the right direction early, posting 20 points in the first quarter on their way to a six-point lead, but quickly found themselves behind, as the Lady Bruins outscored WC 18-10 in the second quarter to take the lead at halftime.
The back-and-forth battle went on into the second half, where Washington County pulled back out front, 45-44, going into the final period.
Central Hardin kept attacking, however, erasing a Commanderette lead in the final minutes to steal a four-point win away from WC.
Senior Kenya Turner was the top scorer for Washington County with 22 points and 10 rebounds, followed by freshman Nic Brizendine’s 16 points on 6-of-6 shooting. Junior Jennifer Keene added nine points with 11 boards.
Washington County vs. Thomas Nelson
Score: 68-47 Washington County
When: Friday, Feb. 8
Where: Washington County High School
Key players: WCHS - Jennifer Keene, Nic Brizendine TNHS - Kaylee Dickson
Game highlights: The Commanderettes ended district play on the right foot on Friday night by beating Thomas Nelson (3-20) handily, 68-47, at home.
“The good thing about that game is that when Kenya (Turner) and Jennifer (Keene) were in foul trouble, we got excellent minutes off the bench from Courtney Jones and Jadiesha Durham. If we can get that from those two, then we can be dangerous down the stretch,” said Washington County Head Coach Bernard Smalley.
After jumping out to a 19-7 lead through the opening quarter, the Commanderettes got the ball inside to Keene often (12 first-half points) on their way to a 27-11 lead in the second quarter. Thomas Nelson was able to cut the lead to 10 at the half, however, sparked by a three-pointer by eighth-grader Haleigh Reiter.
The Lady Generals got as close as seven points in the third quarter, but WC quickly pulled away with a three-pointer by junior Riquel Logan and several inside shots by Keene and Turner. Another Logan three to start the fourth quarter, as well as two buckets each from Turner and Jones helped push the lead over 20 and the Commanderettes went on to win easily from there.
Keene led Washington County with 17 points and 10 rebounds, with Turner adding 14 points. Brizendine had 11 points on 9-of-10 shooting at the free-throw line and had five steals in the game. Jones had four points and six rebounds off the bench for WC. Junior Kaylee Dickson led Thomas Nelson with 16 points.
Washington County @ Campbellsville
Score: 56-53 Washington County
When: Thursday, Feb. 8
Where: Campbellsville High School
Key players: WCHS - Kenya Turner, Jennifer Keene
Game highlights: Washington County snuck out of Campbellsville (7-18) with a 56-53 win on Thursday night in a game where they had the size advantage, but struggled to get anything going from the perimeter.
Turner and Keene had huge games for WC (17-of-32 from the field combined), but the supporting cast had a bit of an off night, hitting just five of their 30 shot attempts.
“We just beat them by 36 over here, but I told the girls it wasn’t going to be easy (on the road),” Smalley said. “They took us to the wire, but our kids were able to pull it out.”
The game was a close one throughout, with the Commanderettes holding only a two-point lead after the first quarter and at halftime. They held the Lady Eagles to nine points in the third quarter to creep out to a six-point advantage, but Campbellsville caught fire for 21 fourth-quarter points to make it a game down the stretch.
Washington County’s duo in the post proved to be too much to overcome, however, as the Commanderettes hit enough free throws to hang on by three.
Turner led all scorers with 23 points and 18 rebounds, although she struggled at the line, 1-of-10. Keene had 13 points to go with 16 boards.
Washington County @ Taylor County
Score: 56-50 Washington County
When: Tuesday, Feb. 8
Where: Taylor County High School
Key players: WCHS - Kenya Turner, Riquel Logan
Game highlights: Before the Commanderettes got past Campbellsville on Thursday, they were just down the road at Taylor County two days prior and similarly pulled out a close road win to start the recent winning streak.
“We didn’t guard anybody,” Smalley said of the highly-contested victory. “We hung in and got a W on the road and any time you can do that it’s a plus. We’ve got a three-game winning streak now, so hopefully we can keep it going into this week.”
Turner was again the go-to option for Washington County, pouring in 28 points on 13-of-20 shooting and pulling down 11 rebounds for another double-double. Keene was held somewhat in check with seven points and seven rebounds, but Logan stepped up with 14 points in the win, including four three-pointers.
It was another game that didn’t see much separation between the teams, as WC held a 22-21 lead at halftime. The Lady Cardinals stayed within four points going into the final quarter, but again, Washington County’s inside presence helped them to a six-point win.
The Commanderettes will host Burgin (13-11) on Friday at 7 p.m. for senior night and visit Fort Knox (1-23) on Saturday at 6 p.m. to close the regular season.