BETSY LAYNE -In his first season as head coach, Derrick Newsome managed to guide Allen Central to Floyd County Conference and 58th District championships. Newsome’s Lady Rebels captured the 58th District title Friday night, defeating Betsy Layne 50-47 in the championship game at the Dome.
Allen Central captured its first Floyd County Conference championship since 1998. The Lady Rebels won their first 58th District title since 2003.
Allen Central went undefeated in the Floyd County Conference/58th District during the regular-season. The Lady Rebels compiled an 8-0 record versus Floyd County Conference/58th District opponents.
In the district championship game, junior guard Sarah Rife led Allen Central with 15 points. Senior guard Hannah MacElhose joined Rife in double figures, scoring 14 points for the Lady Rebels.
Junior center/forward Parsons pushed in eight points and sophomore guard/forward Alyssa Moore added six for Allen Central in the district triumph.
Allen Central had to play from behind early. The Ladycats outscored Allen Central 14-8 in the opening quarter. But the Lady Rebels shook off the slow start. Allen Central doubled up Betsy Layne 16-8 in the second quarter to lead 24-22 at halftime.
The Lady Rebels led 38-33 at the end of the third quarter.
Junior guard Brooklyn Martin netted five points and sophomore guard Elizabeth Prater chipped in two for the Allen Central girls’ basketball team. Martin led Allen Central to a win over South Floyd in the semifinals of the district tournament.
Junior guard/forward DeShea Elliott also played well for the Lady Rebels.
Allen Central (17-13) has now defeated Betsy Layne (14-13) three times this season.
“The first win over Betsy Layne was a big confidence booster for us,” Newsome said. “Then, we were able to get over another hurdle on the road, beating them in overtime after not playing well. We faced adversity again in the district championship and managed to overcome it and win the district title.”
Newsome, who is in his first season as a high school head coach, promised results during his initial meeting with players and coaches.
“During my first meeting, I told our only senior, Hannah MacElhose, and her mother, that this would be a special season for her,” Newsome confided. “We wanted to send Hannah MacElhose out on top in the conference and district and we were able to do that.”
Senior guard Paige Watkins paced Betsy Layne with 15 points. Watkins was the only Betsy Layne scorer to reach double figures. Playing out of a reserve role, senior guard/forward Francescha Brunati narrowly missed double figures. Brunati netted nine points for the Lady Cats.
Senior guard forward TJ Tackett and sophomore guard Chloe Johnson chipped in eight points apiece and Another sophomore guard, Brandy Morrow, added seven for the Ladycats.
Both Allen Central and Betsy Layne advanced to the 15th Region Tournament.
Allen Central will play East Ridge in the final opening round game of the 15th Region Tournament Thursday night. Tip-off for the Allen Central-East Ridge game is set for 8 p.m.
Betsy Layne is slated to play Shelby Valley in the first game of the opening round Wednesday. Tip-off for the Betsy Layne-Shelby Valley game is slated for 6:30 p.m.
Allen Central 50, Betsy Layne 47
Allen Central (50): Rife 15, MacElhose 14, Moore 6, Parsons 8, Prater 2, Martin 5.
Betsy Layne (47): Watkins 15, Morrow 7, TJ Tackett 8, Johnson 8, Brunati 9.
Allen Central……8 16 14 12-50
Betsy Layne……14 8 11 14-47