By Tony Altobelli
Killeen Daily Herald
After a couple of lopsided losses in a row, the Killeen Lady Roos took their frustrations out on Pflugerville Hendrickson on Monday night.
Using a suffocating press defense and a well-executed offense, Killeen made quick work of the Lady Hawks, 69-31 at the KHS gym.
"After our last couple of games, we really needed this," KHS coach Latisha Rosemond said. "We've got a long layoff now and it's always nice to go into a break with a win."
Deasia Johnson led Killeen (8-8) with 12 points, while Elise Kea added 11 and Lauren Smith tossed in 10 to go along with eight rebounds.
"Lauren really feels more comfortable out there when the other two (Johnson and Nicole Governal) are out there," Rosemond said. "When she's relaxed, she really plays well for us."
Teniqua Gray led the third-year Lady Hawks (9-6) with 14 points.
Using lots of movement and crisp passes, the Lady Roos worked the ball around for several good looks as they hit 11 of 19 shots in the first quarter alone as they jumped out to a 22-6 advantage. Smith and Governal each had six points in the quarter, while Johnson added four.
"A lot of our points came from the fast break, but when we went into our halfcourt set, we really executed well," Rosemond said. "We had lots of good looks at the basket and even our partially contested shots were falling."
While the offense clicked, the defense kept Hendrickson at bay, holding the Lady Hawks to just seven shots in the second quarter. Sixteen first-half turnovers by the guests didn't help matters either as Killeen took a 47-18 lead at the half.
In all, 27 Hendrickson turnovers were committed. "For us, it's all about the intensity level," Rosemond said. "Tonight, our intensity was where it needed to be."
Offensively, several contributed nicely to Killeen's effort as Jasmine Pitts (eight points), Governal (six points, seven steals), Rulesha Hart (six points) and Candice Smith (six points) provided strong play.
"We need that type of offensive distribution," Rosemond said. "We can't rely on having one player go for 15 or 20 points every game."
Rosemond was especially with the production of Kea, who hit 5 of 9 from the field, including a 3-pointer.
"I started her tonight to see how she would react and she looked good out there," Rosemond said. "I was very pleased with her offensive contribution."
The Lady Roos will next play on Dec. 20 at home against Marlin. "There's still a ton of things to work on," Rosemond said. "Our shooting still needs to get better and we still need to improve on our halfcourt defense.
"But I like the way we looked tonight."
Contact Tony Altobelli at email@example.com