Kennedy girls blow the doors open in 81-33 win over Sheridan
Even short-handed, the Kennedy girls basketball is a force to be reckoned with.
The No. 3 Trojans (13-3, 7-0 Tri-River) cruised to an 81-33 victory over the visiting Sheridan Spartans (5-7, 1-5) on Tuesday, leaning on their depth and frequent trips to the free throw line to make up for junior starting guard Hailey Arritola, who was unavailable.
Junior wing Grace Schaecher got the start in place of Arritola and was one of nine Kennedy players to get on the scoreboard for the team's fourth consecutive win and seventh straight league victory this year. The Trojans have won 33 games in a row against Tri-River opponents, spanning the past two and a half seasons.
Kennedy spotted Sheridan the first basket of the game before senior post Sophia Carley got the Trojans on the board, sparking an 18-4 run over the final six minutes to end the quarter with a double-digit lead.
Carley scored 12 of her game-high 22 points in the period, including three trips to the free throw line where the Trojans spent a lot of time over the course of the game. Kennedy pounded the ball inside early and often, going 20-of-38 on foul shot opportunities.
Carley scored the first basket of the second quarter as well, helping the Trojans build a 22-6 advantage. The Spartans responded with a 5-1 run sparked by senior guard Kylee McKereghan, who led Sheridan with eight points on the night.
But that's as close as it would get.
Junior wing Ellie Cantu connected on a baseline jumper, followed by a layup from reserve post Rylie Newton, and the Trojans scored the final 18 points of the quarter to take a commanding 43-13 lead going into halftime.
Coming out of the lockers, the Trojans again looked to Carley, who scored back-to-back buckets to open the third following a basket by McKereghan. Kennedy poured in 26 points to take a 69-21 lead at the end of the period.
Carley made it four straight quarters with an opening bucket to start the fourth before the Kennedy reserves took over to close out the win.
In addition to Carley, Cantu and Newton both scored in double figures with 16 and 12, respectively. Freshman Meah Carley added eight and sophomore Reese Hall had seven.
Freshman guard Haley Ayala had eight to match McKereghan for the Sheridan-high. Junior Mikayla Boekhoff added seven for the Spartans.
Kennedy turns its attention to the other side of the Willamette River, where the Trojans travel to Western Christian on Friday to open the second half of their league schedule against the Pioneers (6-9, 2-4).
Tip-off is scheduled for 5:30 p.m.
Tri-River Conference Girls Basketball
Tuesday, Jan. 21 at Kennedy High School
Kennedy 18 25 26 12
Sheridan 6 7 14 12
Kennedy — S. Carley 22, Cantu 16, Newton 12, M. Carley 8, Hall 7, Butsch 6, Schaecher 5, Suing 3, Najera 2
Sheridan — McKereghan 8, H. Ayala 8, Boekhoff 7, Rose 4, Guardiola 2, Nielsen 2, Pacheco 1, M. Ayala 1
Kennedy — 20/38
Sheridan — 9/17
Kennedy — Hall 1, Schaecher 1, Cantu 1
Sheridan — N/A
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