Highlights of Hathaway Brown of Ohio knocking off No.2 ranked Whitney Young of Chicago and No. 19 North Gwinnett from Georgia defeating No. 3 Science Hill from Tennessee. Highlights include top players Lexie Brown, Linnae Harper and Peyton Whitted
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NAPLES, Fla. -- The final four of the Naples Holiday Shootout delivered a pair of upsets Friday, as unranked Hathaway Brown knocked off No. 2 Whitney Young in one semifinal, while a blazing 27-point performance by No. 19-ranked North Gwinnett's Lexie Brown unraveled Science Hill, currently rated as the No. 3 girls' high school basketball team in the country, in the other. That set up a championship meeting between Hathaway Brown and No. 19 North Gwinnett at 9:30 p.m. EST on Saturday at Barron Collier High School, while their higher-ranked adversaries are left to duke it out for third place.
Hathaway Brown 50, Whitney Young 46
Hathaway Brown (Shaker Heights, Ohio) trailed Whitney Young (Chicago, Ill.) for the majority of the game, but the Blazers managed to keep within striking distance and played with veteran composure down the stretch to upset the tournament’s top team.
With 10.4 seconds in the game, Beth Brzozowski hit a three-pointer from the wing to give Hathaway Brown its first lead over the Chicago power since early in the second quarter.
On the next possession, Whitney Young star Linnae Harper drove baseline for a chance to retake the lead. But Hathaway Brown met her with a ferocious double team, forcing the Kentucky commit out of bounds and securing the 50-46 upset of the No. 2-ranked Dolphins.
“In the fourth quarter we doubled Harper every time she touched the ball,” said Hathaway Brown head coach Paul Barlow about his strategy against the No. 7-ranked player in the country.
“We felt if we could keep the game close, our composure would help things fall our way. Beth hit a big three to give us the lead and then we made a great defensive rotation to force (Harper) to step out of bounds, so I was very happy with our effort.”
“This feels unbelievable,” said Brzozowski about hitting the game-winning shot. “They are a renowned team, everybody wants to beat them and we had the opportunity to do that.”
The Dolphins led by as many as 10 points when a steal and a layup by Harper made it 32-22 at the 2:57 mark in the third quarter. Harper finished with a game-high 24 points to go with five steals and three assists; three times she picked the pocket of Brzozowski and converted on the other end.
But Hathaway Brown, the four-time defending state champion in Ohio, was undaunted by the deficit and slowly chipped away the lead. Nia Marshall hit several big shots down the stretch, finishing with 15 points and 10 rebounds. Princeton-bound Vanessa Smith knocked down 12-of-14 free throws, including four in the final minute, to tie the game at 45 and set up the game winner by Brzozowski.
Whitney Young hurt its chances at the free-throw line, hitting just seven-of-16 attempts (43 percent).
|Lexie Brown of North Gwinnett drives to the basket for two of her game-high 27 points against Science Hill. (Photo by Kelly Kline)|
North Gwinnett 62, Science Hill 52
North Gwinnett (Suwanee, Ga.) star Lexie Brown shot 55 percent from beyond the arc and 50 percent from the field for a game-high 27 points to lead the Bulldogs past No. 3-ranked Science Hill (Johnson City, Tenn.), 62-52.
Brown, ranked No. 19 in the Full Court Fresh 50, sank five three-pointers, grabbed six steals and dished out three assists. The Maryland commit scored nine consecutive points in the first quarter to fuel an 11-2 North Gwinnett to open the game.
But Science Hill kept it close thanks to several three-pointers by Shy Copney, who led the Hilltoppers with 13 points and six rebounds. Tianna Tartner briefly gave Science Hill the lead (25-23) when she sank a runner with 2:18 in the second.
The Bulldogs regained the lead for good when Brown completed a four-point play at the end of the third quarter for the 47-42 lead. North Gwinnett closed out the game by outscoring the Hilltoppers 15-10 in the fourth quarter. Penn State-commit Peyton Whitted put up 12 points and grabbed eight rebounds; Joshlyn Belcher added 11 for the Bulldogs.
Tucker 56, Warren Easton 43
Junior Naima Jackson put up the majority of her game high-18 points from the free-throw line, where she went 12-for-14, to help Tucker (Tucker, Ga.) get by Warren Easton (New Orleans, La.). Erykah Davenport added 15 points by traditional methods. Warren Easton, led by freshman Kechelle Figueroa's 14 points and three steals, outrebounded the Tigers, 37-28, but shot as a team just one-for-18 from behind the arc and only 35 percent from the field.
Dwyer 67, Dreher 59
Florida State-commit Kai James put on her first big performance of the tournament, notching 29 points and grabbing 22 rebounds to lead Dwyer (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) to a win over Dreher (Columbia, S.C.). James, ranked No. 19 in the Full Court Fresh 50, had been held to single digits in the Panthers' first two losing efforts in the tournament. Sophomore Jordan Star put up 26 points lead Dreher, who is 0-3 in the tournament; Kaydra Duckett added 15.
Additinal Friday Naples Holiday Shootout Scores
Cardinal O’Hara 43, Edgewater 39
McDonogh 51, Marist 48
Troy 67, First Baptist Academy 29
Beach Bash Division
St. Thomas Aquinas 61, Gateway 29
St. John Neumann 49, Lely 36
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