February 1st, 2020

Sacred Heart tops George Rogers Clark in LIT quarterfinal

Dalton Pence 

Staff Writer 

Sacred Heart tops George Rogers Clark in LIT quarterfinal
File photo by Jeff Woods

Sacred Heart utilized a solid all-around performance to defeat George Rogers Clark 59-41 at Valley High School on Friday afternoon. The top-ranked Valkyries put away the Lady Cardinals with a strong third quarter from Destinee Marshall, Kristen Clemons, and Triniti Ralston. 

Sacred Heart out-scored GRC 17-8 in the third quarter, while winning the rebounding battle 13-2. Defense proved to be one of the main keys throughout; Sacred Heart forced 19 turnovers, directly resulting in 17 cumulative points. 


“We don’t play a lot of zone, but we did tonight”, Sacred Heart head coach Donna Moir explained. “We really tried to concentrate on (Kennedy) Igo, but give it to her, she went 5-for-7 from deep tonight. She’s a great shooter.”


Marshall echoed the same sentiment. “Coach Moir wanted us to maintain their shooter (Igo)”, she explained. “All we did in practice was focus on defense.”


The senior point guard finished with a team-high 17 points. “I thought Destinee ran the show a little bit”, Moir said. “We got scoring from a lot of different spots.” 


For Marshall, the game held a different weight than others. “The past couple times we played them, we lost”, Marshall explained. “I kind of had a chip on my shoulder today. The team was excited and I was just trying to keep them pumped.”


Clemons also led the way with 12 points and 15 rebounds in only three quarters of play. “We felt like it was a little bit of a mismatch and (Clemons) was scoring at will early”, Moir said. “Kristen is our workhorse; she’s going to rebound and play hard.” Eight of those rebounds were on the offensive glass.


The Valkyries boast an experienced rotation led by a slew of seniors, but Ralston has been instrumental in the team’s success. “These girls have really embraced her”, Moir said. “It’s hard going into a veteran team, but she has played her role very well.”


The freshman guard finished in double-figures with 11 points. Her early scoring sparked a 12-2 Sacred Heart run to open the contest. Her youth doesn’t serve as a distraction for the team.


“We all look up to each other”, Marshall explained. “Once you get out there it’s about one team, and specific grades don’t matter.”


Sacred Heart advances to take on Ryle at Valley High School in the Republic Bank LIT semifinals on Saturday at 2:00. The Valkyries defeated the Lady Raiders 83-61 back on January 17th. 


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