KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kennedy Townsend, playing in an unfamiliar role, helped her Park Hill Trojans to a Suburban Conference 48-44 victory over Blue Springs South on Thursday, Feb. 14 at Park Hill High School.
Townsend’s game-high 20 points led Park Hill to a fourth straight win. It was the Trojans’ (12-10) fifth win in their past six tries.
“Right now we’re making shots and we’re defending better,” Park Hill coach Aaron Neeser said. “I don’t think we’re playing bad, and that’s why we’re .500, but it’s the little things that we’re doing well. … You can see our confidence growing and we’re getting better.”
Park Hill, who improved to 5-3 in league play, also earned a season split with Blue Springs South, who won the earlier meeting 51-45 back on Jan. 3.
This time Park Hill got off to a solid start, jumping out to a 9-3 lead before owning an 11-7 lead after the first quarter. But the Trojans’ key to victory was a strong fourth quarter.
“That’s always one quarter we always try and come out strong in,” Townsend said.
With 2:50 remaining, Townsend hit a 3-pointer to knot the score at 34-all and ignite a 14-4 run to lead the Trojans to victory. Defense also played a factor as the Jaguars didn’t score a second-half basket until the 3:22 mark of the third quarter.
“It was the first time this group really showed some guts,” Neeser said. “You could see it in their eyes. They started to make some plays and they just didn’t want to be denied, and they’re just enjoying winning right now and they want to keep it going.”
The solid quarter followed a challenging one, as the Trojans managed just two buckets as they fell behind seven points ahead of the break.
Townsend, who tallied 13 of her points in the fourth quarter, drained two of her three 3-pointers in big spots late, cashing in on a pair of deep balls during the strong second half. She was also good on 7 of 8 free throw attempts.
“That’s all my teammates,” Townsend said. “They shared the ball and did an awesome job. We’re playing so well. Tonight it was me and the (next night) it might be someone else.”
Hannah Graves contributed eight points for Park Hill, six coming in the crucial third quarter in which the Jaguars only scored five of their own points.
The Trojans host Lee’s Summit North at 7 p.m. on Wednesday.
Park Hill South 43, Liberty North 33
Alecia Westbrook collected 21 points as Park Hill South beat Liberty North for a third time this season on Monday, Feb. 18 in Liberty.
Westbrook scored eight field goals and was 13 of 14 from the free-throw line.
The Panthers (19-4) held the Eagles to single digits in each quarter. Westbrook registered nine points to help Park Hill South out to a 17-8 lead after the first quarter.
The Panthers led 23-17 at halftime and 35-24 after three quarters of action.
Park Hill South 57, Truman 56 OT
Jaidynn Mason drained a 3-pointer with three seconds left to lift Park Hill South over Truman in a revenge victory on Thursday, Feb. 14 at Truman High School.
Mason tallied only two points in regulation, but she made two treys and the kill shot for the Panthers, who fell to Truman 64-58 the day prior in Riverside.
Park Hill South trailed after the first two quarters — 16-13, 30-25 — before knotting the contest at 40-all after the third quarter and again at 51-51 at the end of regulation.
The Panthers, thanks to Mason, then out-scored Truman 9-7 in the extra frame for the win.
Westbrook scored a team-high 21 points, and DQ Guillory had four 3s for 12 points. Park Hill South cashed in on nine 3-pointers in the contest.
Truman 64, Park Hill South 58 2 OT
Before Park Hill South won at Truman on Thursday, they lost to the Patriots at home on Wednesday, Feb. 13 in double overtime.
At one point, the Panthers (18-4, 8-2 after the game) trailed by 10 in the fourth quarter, but rallied. Alecia Westbrook hit a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left to forge a tie at 45. Park Hill South had a chance for a game-winner after a missed free throw but missed the show. At the end of the first overtime, the Panthers missed another potential game winner.
Truman hit a pair of 3s early in the second OT to pull away for good.
Park Hill South hit 11 3s in the loss, six by Allison Howe. Truman’s Deon Monroe led all scorers with 25 points.
Platte County 44, Winnetonka 36
Amaya Blake poured in 19 points as the Pirates defeated Winnetonka in a Suburban Blue contest on Tuesday, Feb. 12 at Winnetonka.
Blake, a freshman guard, cashed in on a pair of 3s in the game and had nine of her game-high 19 in the third quarter. Shayla Kohler added 12 points for the Pirates.
Platte County led Winnetonka 9-5 after the first quarter and 25-13 at halftime. The Griffons then cut the lead to 33-28 headed into the final quarter. But the Pirates out-scored the home side 11-8 in the final frame for the win.
Grandview 63, Platte County 54
Grandview completed the league sweep of Platte County with a league victory on Thursday, Feb. 14 in Grandview.
In the third meeting of the season between the two teams, the Bulldogs put the pressure on the Pirates early.
Grandview jumped out to a 24-13 lead after the first quarter. The Bulldogs then extended their lead to 40-24 by halftime. The Pirates, who beat Grandview 56-53 in the Winnetonka Invitational in late November, added 10 in the third frame before a 21-point fourth quarter proved too little too late.
Senior Jaycie Stubbs turned in a 23-point performance to lead Platte County in scoring, 11 and three treys coming in the fourth quarter. Blake added 16 points.
Platte County 66, Grain Valley 56
The Pirates bounced back with a conference victory over Grain Valley on Monday, Feb. 18 at Grain Valley North Middle School, a location change due to a power outage.
Stats for that game were not provided by deadline.
Platte County earned the No. 3 seed in the Class 4 District 16 tournament, played at Winnetonka High School.
The Pirates open with No. 6 St. Joseph Lafayette at 1 p.m. Saturday. The winner will advance to the semifinals to face No. 2 Smithville on Monday.
In Class 5 District 16, No. 4 Park Hill will take on No. 5 Oak Park at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at St. Joseph Central High School.
No. 1 Park Hill South will await the Park Hill-Oak Park winner for a semifinal game at 5:30 p.m. Monday.