Legacy cruises to sectional title win


MONROE — If you missed the first quarter of Legacy Christian Academy’s sectional final on Tuesday, here’s how it went.

Three point shot. Swish.

Three point shot. Swish.

Three point shot. Swish.

The Knights drained four in the first eight minutes and two more in the second quarter en route to a 66-22 shellacking of Ripley-Union-Lewis-Huntington at Monroe High School.

The Lady Jays — whose fans were already wearing sectional champions shirts — came out in a zone defense and likely regretted it after junior Natalie Strickle made three in the first four minutes as Legacy built an 11-6 lead that reached 21-8 after the first quarter.

Ball game.

Legacy (19-4) advances to a Division IV district final for the fifth time in the last six years, where it will play Russia — No. 12 in the final girls poll — Saturday at Troy High School. Game time was not set as of press time.

“Last game I shot really well,” Strickle said. “I just think I came ready to play. (The first shot) came off and I was like, I’m ready to shoot. We came ready to play as a team. It’s sectional time and I wanted us to win.”

Sophomore Alli Graves led all scorers with 20 points. Strickle added 14, while Stanley had eight, Allport seven, and senior Caroline Kensinger and freshman Anna Sweeney six each.

Following Strickle’s third three-pointer, Alayna Allport made a bucket and made two free throws off consecutive inbound turnovers by Ripley (8-16), which believe it or not had won its first tournament game since 2012 in advancing to Tuesday’s game.

Stanley and Graves then each scored off steals and Graves drained a three pointer for the final points of the first. Allport opened the second with a three pointer and Ripley, which committed 15 first-half turnovers, went through several scoreless stretches.

“We’ve got a lot of confidence in our half-court defense,” Coach Mark Combs said. “Our perimeter pressure was just so good. It’s always the plan, you just don’t ever know if the plan is going to materialize.”

Legacy led 38-17 at halftime after Stanley made a three pointer with 1:20 left, and 56-19 after three with a running clock due to the size of the lead.

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