The Duncan Banner
For the Velma-Alma Lady Comets, the entire 2012-13 season has been an emotional roller coaster ride since before the year officially started.
But, Saturday night the ride took a very joyous turn as the Lady Comets were able to celebrate a district championship with a convincing 58-35 victory over the Macomb Lady Hornets at J. M. Carey Fieldhouse.
“I’m very proud of these girls,” V-A coach Jerry Garrett said. “With everything we’ve been through since June, and the way they responded and competed. It’s been a long time since we’ve won a girls district championship. I’m happy with the way we protected our house tonight as well.”
Macomb felt it was still in the contest going into the halftime break at 33-24, but the Lady Comets weren’t about to be denied on the evening.
A 12-7 run in the third quarter gave V-A a 45-31 lead with three quarters complete, before the Lady Comets turned on the offense in the fourth to put the game away.
Early on however, the tempo of the game looked even as both teams found themselves deadlocked at 3-3 at the 6:49 mark of the first quarter.
But, in the blink of an eye the Lady Hornets found themselves down 14-6 and staring at a 23-12 deficit at the end of the first quarter.
“You’ve got to make free throws and easy shots,” Garrett said. “They (Macomb) have some players that can make shots and make plays. I was proud we got over the hump and extended the lead from 10-12 points to 20 points late on in the game. Give Macomb credit, I thought they were a very competitive team.”
V-A finished 13-of-24 from the free throw line on the evening, while MHS totaled 11-of-14.
Aria Johnson led the Lady Comets (18-6) with 22 points and 19 rebounds on the night, with Kylee Saville adding 17 points in the contest.
Teddi Southerland put in nine points, with Bita Humphreys and Shalyn Files each scoring five points.
“It’s pretty satisfying winning districts,” Files said. “Our goal isn’t just to be district champions. We want to win everything and we just have to get focused on next week and our next opponent. We’ve been prepping for Macomb all week and executed our game plan.”
Macomb (13-11) was led by Shania Pace with 10 points, followed by Destiny Reagan with nine points. Kelsea Hasbell and Brittany Bluford each added six points.
V-A now advances to play the winner of the District 3 tournament, which is favored to be No. 9 New Lima.
The Lady Comets will tip-off regionals on Valentine’s Day night from Macomb High School with tip-off set for 6:30 p.m.