Girls Varsity Basketball
|Falls Church High School||71|
The Lady Jags matched the 2015-2016 team for the best 4-game start in the school's modern history with a 3 and 1 record, celebrating their third straight win tonight. This one was tallied against the Lady Atoms of Annandale HS on the home court. The offense continued an impressive, escalating point production with the second-highest score in the last eleven years -- that's over 250 games -- exceeded only by the 93 points registered in a game played two seasons ago.
Annandale rushed out to an early lead with a basket and a foul shot, but Falls Church quickly reversed the trend. The Jaguars clawed their way to a 16 to 8 first quarter lead and extended it to 27 to 15 by halftime. Five players netted the Falls Church points, highlighted by sophomore point guard Amari Faust with a series of runners, jumpers and free throws, and also notably by senior guard Leah Shaw who successfully lofted three very high-arcing three-pointers (if the basketball had a nose, it would have been bleeding) out of her first four attempts.
The Lady Jags ran away with this one in the third quarter. Not only did they end the quarter doubled up on the Atoms (52-26), Falls Church nearly matched its own first-half score in under 8 minutes. Amari Faust hit a "3" and a "2" and two free throws; senior forward Nyeisha Thompson also landed both of her shots from the penalty stripe. But this quarter belonged to junior guard Sierra Kennard. She taught Annandale the rule of sevens: #21 banked in 14 points off of 7 shots. Watching her in this quarter was deja vu all over again -- and again, and again, and again, and again, and again as Kennard struck paydirt from the exact same spot 6 times in the first three minutes of the quarter.
The fourth quarter turned out to be a wild and entertaining affair with both sides distributing 38 points equally in those eight minutes, totaling nine "3s" in the process. The Lady Jags had four of them with Leah Shaw landing her fourth shot from beyond the arc, followed by two more from sophomore Gabby Clay (who has now scored in three straight games), and the final one by junior guard Yanessa Kassebaum who swished in her first points in a varsity uniform.
This was a very pleasing victory for Coach Pritchett and her squad with several noteworthy performances overall. Senior guard Rasha Benhamida landed a basket in every quarter and leads the club by averaging 12 points per game in this early season; Amari Faust enjoyed the best game thus far in her varsity career and is averaging 10 points per game this season. With her eighth long-distance basket of the season (seven in the past two games), Leah Shaw now has 95 three-point baskets in less than 70 Varsity games. Sierra Kennard's nine baskets this evening puts her just two sure shots shy of 600 Varsity points -- already solidifying the junior within the top five of the highest-scoring Lady Jaguars of this century after merely 47 Varsity games.
Scoring Summary: Sierra Kennard, 18 points; Amari Faust, 15 points; Leah Shaw, 13 points; Rasha Benhamida, 8 points; Gabriele Clay, 8 points; Nyeisha Thompson, 6 points; Yenessa Kassebaum, 3 points.