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Lady Rockets rip Bullitt East

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By Todd Martin

The Shelby County girls' basketball team had no hangover from dropping their last two games. The Lady Rockets raced out to a 19-7 first quarter lead on Bullitt Central Tuesday and never looked back in a 71-36 win.

"We knew it was important to come out of the gate strong on the road against a 6th Region team," SCHS head coach Sally Zimmerman said. "Haleigh (LeCompte) had two three pointers and Allison (Morris) hit one -- there was no shooting hangover from the Manual game. I told the girls that a game like that wouldn't happen again and they came out confident and hitting shots."

The Lady Rockets (14-7) led 34-17 at halftime and didn't let off the gas after the break. The girls outscored Bullitt Central (7-12) 17-8 in the third quarter and coasted through the fourth.

Four of the Lady Rockets' five starters scored in double figures. Raechele Gray led the way with 16 points, Jennica Garitty added 13, Karissa Nicholson had 12 and LeCompte chipped in 11. Morris, the fifth starter, was just shy of double figures with nine points.

Zimmerman said the play of Garitty and Nicholson in the post was key.

"I thought playing Manual would help our post players fight more inside, and get up and down the court -- just make them hungrier," she said. "They were both very active on the boards, especially on the offensive end. Jennica had nine rebounds and Karissa eight. If we can get 25 points and 17 rebounds out of the two of them we're going to beat a lot of teams. They got more touches in this game and that's something we've got to do more of. We've got two of the bigger post players in the region and we need to try to use them more."

The Lady Rockets did most of their damage on the break, but Zimmerman said that took its toll on the team's offense.

"I thought we were a little impatient on offense," she said. "We did well in transition, but when that wasn't there we seemed to rush a little and settle for the first shot we saw."

Zimmerman also noted that the Lady Rockets didn't do enough to slow Bullitt Central's penetration.

"(Bullitt Central) did a nice job getting into the paint," she said. "I think our defensive principles need some work. I didn't really show in their points because we did a good job getting on them once they got in the paint, but fundamentally we weren't very sound. Teams in our region like Anderson, Oldham and Simon Kenton are going to hit those shots when they get in the paint, that's what we have to prepare for."

Oldham County

The Lady Rockets will face Oldham County tonight in the annual rivalry game.

The Lady Colonels have struggled some this season, losing four of five in early January, but have since rebounded with back-to-back wins over Owen County, 51-50, and Spencer County, 46-39.

Oldham has two big players in the post, but Zimmerman said the main difference this season is that the Lady Colonels can penetrate.

"They've got some guards that can penetrate off the dribble, and, of course, their big girls are always there," she said. "We need to try to make it a full court game to neutralize their post players."

Zimmerman also said that Oldham's defense will be tough.

"They're going to hound Raechele (Gray) as much as anybody we've seen this year, of course she's used to it, but it means we can't sit back and watch," she said. "Oldham is going to play hard, and they played Simon Kenton to about 10 points (54-43), so we know they're a good team."