Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ridgeway girls finally defeat Overton to end five-year drought

 from Commercial Appeal

The game was far from aesthetically pleasing for the eighth-ranked Ridgeway girls. However, at the conclusion of Wednesday night's District 15-AAA basketball matchup on the home floor, the Roadrunners had an immensely satisfying 56-49 win over No. 4 Overton.

"It's been five years since we've beaten them. That's something we can say we accomplished," said senior center Odegua Oigbokie. The 6-2 senior, bound for Old Dominion next year, established dominance inside early on Georgetown signee Kelsey Briggs, and saddled her with back-to-back fouls late in the first quarter. Oigbokie had 10 of her 14 points by halftime, and the Roadrunners (15-2, 6-0) built up a 32-24 lead despite seven of their 22 turnovers in the second period.

"I told the girls at halftime, we take care of the ball we're up 20," Ridgeway coach Rhonda Kendall said. "We tried every way we could to give the game away, but we're so young (Oigbokie is the only senior in the rotation). Still, we used our size well and dug down when we had to. This is a big step for us."
It got even more dicey for Ridgeway in the third quarter when Oigbokie got her fourth foul. Then Philecia Atkins briefly snapped a cold spell at the arc with back-to-back 3-pointers to get Overton (18-4, 5-1) to within 48-45 with 3:07 left to play.

Overton seemed primed to pull yet another late escape act. But Ridgeway hit 8-of-10 free throws down the stretch, including four of junior Ashley Jackson's game-high 15 points.

"We had to keep ourselves in check," said Jackson.

"And keep talking to each other," Oigbokie added.

The Wolverines stayed within 52-49, but Ridgeway's Ciara Pettis got a steal that would break Overton's back.

"We were playing from behind on defense inside. And when we gave ourselves a chance there late in the game, we kept giving it back," said Overton coach Lynn Smith, who got 13 points from Briggs and 12 from Amber Holmes.

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