Hannah McKay poured in a game-best 25 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Owensboro Catholic to a 61-49 girls' high school basketball victory against Ohio County on Tuesday night at the Sportscenter.
The versatile senior scored 10 points in the first quarter, including a 3-pointer just before the buzzer that gave the Lady Aces (3-1) a 19-11 advantage. Catholic pushed its lead to 29-19 on another McKay 3 midway through the second period, and Spencer Harvey's steal and layup pushed the Lady Aces ahead 34-21 at intermission.
Catholic opened the third quarter on a 10-2 run, taking a 21-point lead when Harvey found Isabella Henning on a cut inside for a reverse layup.
According to Lady Aces coach Michael Robertson, it was a good start to the second half, but his team didn't sustain that effort.
"I thought the very beginning of the third quarter, we played really well," he said. "Then we started subbing, and we just lost all momentum. I don't know where our heads were at tonight. We did not look very good. I thought we were kind of lackadaisical."
Ohio County's Kelsey Kennedy scored eight of her 11 points in the third period, helping the Lady Eagles (2-2) cut the deficit to 53-37 through three quarters.
Ella Gaddis knocked down a pair of free throws to bring Ohio County within 59-47 with 1:20 remaining, but the Lady Eagles couldn't get any closer from there.
"I thought our kids battled, played hard and didn't give up," said Ohio County coach Matt Brigance, noting the improvement from his team's 69-15 loss to Catholic two years ago. "Every time we'd make a run, they'd hit a big shot. That's what a veteran, senior-laden team like Owensboro Catholic will do to you."
The Lady Aces also got 11 points from Isabella Henning, while Catherine Head added eight points. Harvey recorded seven points, five assists and four steals.
It was also the third outing of 20-plus points for McKay in four games this season.
"She's a great shooter on the 3-point line," Robertson said of McKay, who drained a trio of 3-pointers. "She's doing a lot of things for us, but I also want her to get down low and bang and get some easy buckets. I think sometimes she settles for that five-, seven-footer instead of getting all the way to the rim. She'll get there, I'm not worried about that."
As a whole, Robertson said his team was too hesitant in driving to the basket.
"We've got to attack," he said. "And when we attack, we've got to try to get to the rim. We would attack and then we would pull it out. We were settling too much. We've got to get stronger getting the ball to the basket.
"(Ohio County) played a zone tonight. We looked very lethargic against the zone. We hadn't seen a zone all year, so we've got to work on that a little bit."
Katie Probus finished with 11 points and five rebounds for the Lady Eagles, while Heaven Vanover chipped in nine points.
For Brigance, Tuesday was a step in the right direction for his young squad.
"We feel good," he said. "We started three sophomores, a junior and a senior, so we're still a young basketball team. Our goal is simple: To win the district and get back to the regional tournament. That's what we're pushing for, trying to get better each game and improving."
OHIO COUNTY 11-10-14-14 -- 49
OWENSBORO CATHOLIC 19-15-19-8 -- 61
Ohio County (49) -- Kennedy 11, Probus 11, Vanover 9, Gaddis 5, Bullock 4, Embry 4, Sandefur 3, Hudnall 2.
Owensboro Catholic (61) -- McKay 25, Henning 11, Head 8, Harvey 7, Maggard 5, Riney 3, Goetz 1, Reid 1.