Oklahoma City, OK — OKLAHOMA CITY — Rashelle Carr came out of a slump and it could not have come at a better time as far as the Duncan Lady Demons were concerned.
With Kinzie Kennedy sidelined with an injury, Carr stepped up her game with 26 points to lead Duncan to a 41-28 win over Northwest Classen in its season opener.
“She had been frustrated in her last couple of scrimmages and practices,” Duncan head coach Karen Berninger said. “She didn’t have ownership of her shot. I expected the slump because she is transitioning to the point guard. Tonight, she stayed with the offense and the game plan and took advantage of her opportunities.”
Carr showed patience in the offense, mixed with aggressiveness when needed. It was needed a lot in the second half as she scored all but one of Duncan’s field goals.
Northwest Classen cut the lead into single digits in the third quarter but did itself little favors by struggling at the free-throw line, making two of its nine charity shots. Any chance the Lady Knights would have of cutting any further into the lead were squashed by Carr, who was able to get into the paint at will. Aliecia Milton pitched in some help with a field goal with 1:54 remaining in the quarter to give Duncan a 32-20 lead. Duncan would never be seriously threatened again in the game.
“There were a couple of times they made runs,” Berninger said, “I was extremely proud to see how the kids handled it. It’s so easy to start playing not to lose. When I saw them play to win, I saw a big step.”
Duncan took its first big step in the second quarter with suffocating defense. Leading 13-8, the Lady Demons put the clamps down on the Lady Knights, forcing multiple turnovers in the back court as the home team struggled to get shots off.
Two free throws by Baylie Berninger started a run that involved three free throw by Kara Watkins and five points by Carr as Duncan extended its lead to 23-8. Northwest Classen would end the half on a strong note, outscoring Duncan 7-2 in the final two minutes but would have no answer for Carr in the second half.
Watkins scored six points in support of Carr and Milton added four. The Lady Demons will be back in action on Friday when it takes on Star Spencer in the Cache Festival.