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Lady Eagles stopped in bid to return to finals

Lebanon girls get revenge on Kennett in Division II semifinals

COACH PETER AMES talks things over with his team in the second half of Thursday night's Division II semifinal matchup with Lebanon. Joshua Spaulding. (click for larger version)
March 10, 2011
MANCHESTER — Last year the Kennett girls' hoop team knocked off previously-undefeated Lebanon in the Class I finals to capture the state championship.

The Eagles were looking to make a return trip to the finals this season, but standing in their way in the semifinals on Thursday at Southern New Hampshire University was Lebanon.

The Raiders got a measure of revenge on the Eagles, recording a 59-56 win over the girls from Kennett to advance to the finals.

"We had talked about it before the game and it held true, in big games you have to rebound," said Kennett coach Peter Ames. "I didn't think that we rebounded well. We gave them too many shots of second and third opportunities."

The Eagles and Raiders played even early, with Lebanon taking an 11-6 lead midway through the frame and then a 14-8 lead with 3:39 to go. The Eagles closed the gap to 18-14 after one period.

Kennett came back and took the early in the second quarter, but Lebanon came back and retook the lead, grabbing a 37-32 lead at halftime.

The Eagles rallied in the third quarter, outscoring the Raiders 13-11 to cut the lead to just three points, 48-45 after three quarters.

The fourth quarter was dead even, though the Raiders jumped out to the seven-point lead early in the quarter. Kennett rallied back on a pair of Allie Wagner three-pointers, cutting the lead to just two at 56-54 on a Melissa Frase free throw with 1:25 on the clock.

However, the Raiders hit their free throws down the stretch to pull ahead by five with 26 seconds to go. Kennett got a hoop from Casey Blakely with seven seconds left and with six seconds left, the Raiders went to the line and missed both shots, giving Kennett one final chance. However, the Eagles were unable to get the ball up the court and the Raiders moved on to the finals.

Look for a full story on the game in next week's print edition.

Salmon Press
Martin Lord & Osman
Alton School
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