Stephenson girls 69, Luella 50

For a half, it looked as if Luella had closed the gap on Stephenson in Region 2-AAAAA.

Then Stephenson began pressing, and the truth of the region became more apparent: The Lady Jaguars are the class of the league.

Stephenson won 69-50 Friday night behind 17 points from sophomore Naima Jackson, who led four players in double figures. The Lady Jaguars (14-4, 8-0 Region 2-AAAAA) completed a regular-season sweep of Luella.

“The first half they hung with us,” said Jackson, whose three baskets sparked a 12-0 run to start the third period. “We just kept hustling and did what we needed to do.”

Kyana Johnson and Kaliyah Mitchell scored 13 each for Stephenson and Kerry Watson added 11.

The loss ended an 11-game winning streak for Luella (15-4, 6-2), which played without starting point guard Amber Griffin, the Henry County school’s all-time leader in assists. In her absence, leading scorer Britney Guy took over at the point, and Stephenson double-teamed her most of the night.

“Britney did the best she could. She just wore down,” said Luella coach Eddie Pratt. “At some point, someone else has to step up.”

The Lady Jaguars, who held Luella to single-digit scoring in all four quarters back on Dec. 6, scored the first seven points Friday night, but Luella clawed back into the game, twice pulling within a point in the second quarter. Guy’s bucket to open the second period cut the Stephenson lead to 21-20, and Brianna Moore’s basket moments later made it 23-22.

Stephenson stretched the lead to 30-22 with a 7-0 run and led 36-29 before a 5-0 Luella run trimmed the margin to two. Stephenson led 37-34 at intermission.
Stephenson pressed only sparingly in the first half, coach Dennis Watkins’ means of avoiding foul trouble, but unleashed the press in full force coming out of half time. The Lady Jaguars held Luella without a field goal in the third period, forcing repeated turnovers and getting layups out of them. Luella’s only point in the quarter came on a free throw by Laghanae Davis at the 3:59 mark, and Stephenson followed that with a 10-0 run to close the quarter with a 59-35 lead.

“We handled it the first half,” said Luella coach Eddie Pratt, “but the last time I checked, you’ve got to play four quarters.”

Guy’s basket with 5:30 to play was the Lady Lions’ first of the second half, and by that point the game was decided.

Guy, who was honored before the game as Luella’s all-time leading scorer, netted 18 Friday and Davis added 17.

11 comments Add your comment

Paul Mokeski

January 20th, 2012
9:49 pm

Chamblee 58
Miller Grove 56

No real competition

January 23rd, 2012
4:09 pm

The JAGUARS won’t make it once they hit the playoffs. A team full of super stars who do not want to play team ball.

hhmmm??

January 25th, 2012
11:06 pm

Superstars? This team does not have superstars. I saw that team play. They have the twins and Kaliyah Mitchell as leaders. The rest of the team seem to be good role players. They could upset some in playoffs. Dont be surprised

Reply to hhmm

January 26th, 2012
2:54 pm

OOOO, so you just saw the team play but you can spell the name Kaliyah Mitchell out? What a joke. Ok Jaguar PARENT…. LOL… I agree with “No real competition” The team is full of superstars who are selfish and don’t want to play team ball!! I have watched them play also and they are a very selfish team. If the coach does not break down that SUPERSTAR mantality, they will not be upsetting anyone other than themselves. Sleep tight JAGUAR PARENT…..

JAGUAR Fan

January 26th, 2012
3:05 pm

why is everyone always hating on Stephenson? What is really the problem. I am a X-JAGUAR parent and it is a shame how people dis-like our school. The reality of it is this…. Stephenson basketball plays no good teams in their region, so when it comes time for the playoffs, they can’t get anywhere. The girls have a descent coaching staff, nothing spectacular, but descent. The team is not highly rated but hard working. They can compete with the teams in their region but not the other 5A teams. Maybe they will have a better chance next year when they drop down. The reason most people hate on Stephenson is because they are over-rated… To much hype over nothing… They are just an average team. Not 1 superstar is on the team. Absolutely no one on that team stood out the 3 times I watched them play this year. I am not knocking them, just simply stating what I SAW……

JAB

January 27th, 2012
7:34 am

Stephenson girls basketball are a proven top HS program, 2 State championships, & 2 state runner ups. So what is the hype about???

@JAB

January 28th, 2012
11:26 pm

Yeah, what is the hype? LOL…

Jaguar

January 29th, 2012
12:08 am

Basketball Voach

January 30th, 2012
12:12 am

Ok, real talk. What does 2 state championships and 2 state runner ups have to do with playing team ball? Just take a look at your game Friday at SHS. You won by only 3 points against a team you had 3 weeks ago beat by 40 points. What’s the difference? Stephenson girls basketball 1st string does not play team ball.. The comment above that stated if you don’t play team ball the only people you will be upsetting is yourself is so very true…. That was a horrible game. And watching from the stands as a coach, I no longer want to recruit any of those girls for my team. That is the quickest way to kill team chemistry.

Stephenson Girls basketball

February 3rd, 2012
10:59 pm

Stephenson girls basketball on the fall again. About to lose a bunch of girls again. Seems that coaching staff has a real problem. Maybe if they stopped kissing certain parents behinds and learn had to treat their players with some decency and order. It’s a shame. At first I believed it was just the parents. But it seems this problem is repeating itself which tells me the common denominator is COACHING…. Get of your behinds and get your heads from out the clouds and stop bragging around town about how deep your bench is. That’s all you have is bench players… I have not seen one stand out.. Not a one…

I read above about an upset. LMBO…. Upset who? Upset themselves!!!

Jaguars

February 11th, 2012
3:42 pm

Ok Jaguars, I need you to prove everyone wrong. This is your chance to put it up or shut it up!