Smith helps Western outrun Walbrook, 77-49

March 04, 1994|By Jamison Hensley | Jamison Hensley,Contributing Writer

Western won its track meet yesterday.

Striking off their fine-tuned fast break, the No. 2 Doves ran past and ran down fifth-seeded and visiting Walbrook, 77-49, in a Class 4A, North Region semifinal game. It was Western's third straight win over Walbrook this season.

Top-seeded Western, winner of four straight since its one-point loss to No. 1 Hammond, plays host to Lake Clifton at 7 tonight in the region final.

Junior guard Kimberly Smith and junior guard/forward Chanel Wright (23 points, seven rebounds, five blocks) created most of the highlights. When the 5-foot-9 Smith wasn't making sharp up-court passes to Wright, she was making uncontested layups herself.

Smith's all-around performance produced a triple-double: 23 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists.

"We're playing better defense than earlier in the year," Smith said. "When you play better defense, you have a better fast break."

Western made 32 of 66 shots (48 percent) and scored 28 of its 41 first-half points off its fast break, which faced little retaliation against a crawling Warriors defense.

"I think our defense slowed their entire game down," Smith said.

The precision of the offense was even more startling because the Doves hadn't practiced the past two days because of the weather.

"I think they were frustrated with not playing," Western coach Breezy Bishop said. "I don't know what team to expect out there. We were mentally tough this time. But the last time we played Lake [Clifton] we weren't and they almost beat us. So I guess we'll see [tonight]."

Walbrook grabbed its first and only lead when Dashawn Coleman hit the first of her six three-pointers two minutes into the game to put the Warriors ahead 5-2. Then, the Western fast break seized total control.

The Doves (20-2) reeled off 17 unanswered points, which gave them a 21-5 lead with 2:03 left in the first period. On the closing end of that run, Walbrook committed five turnovers in six possessions over a two-minute span.

The Warriors (11-7), who beat Woodlawn on Tuesday in the region's first round, cut the lead to 26-15 on back-to-back three-pointers by Coleman. Western then scored nine straight and led by as many as 31 points.

Coleman was the entire offense for Walbrook, which did not score on three consecutive possessions the entire game. She scored seven of the Warriors' nine in the first period and 15 of their 19 by halftime.

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