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Still searching for their first W this season

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Eminence girls’ basketball team 0-11 after losing three games in the Kentucky Country Day Holiday Classic

By Tommie Kendall

Entering the new year, the Eminence girls’ basketball team is still searching for its first win of the season.

The Lady Warriors are 0-11 following three losses in the Kentucky Country Day Holiday Tournament last week. The host school beat them 56-27 on Monday, Whitefield Academy beat them 63-27 on Tuesday and Shawnee beat them 61-43 on Wednesday. The one bright spot for the squad was from junior point guard Rachel Raisor, who averaged 11.7 points per game in the three-day stretch and scored a season-high 20 points in the finale against Shawnee.

The Warriors have not won a game since last February when they defeated Cornerstone Christian. Their closest outing this season was a 59-53 loss to Evangel Christian on Dec. 8.

After the roster was depleted to just six players due to a few drop offs and injuries, three middle school players have recently moved up to the varsity level — eighth graders Emily Bryant, Gailyn Carroll and Samantha Thompson. It’s been a struggling season for the Warriors so far, but one coach Carter Martin is hoping to rejuvenate as the end draws near.

“I think we played about as well as we could with those eighth graders last week. They still have to learn to play together,” Martin said. “With them trying to fill some important slots, it’s tough right now. Hopefully we’re there by the end of the season.”

While Raisor is running the point, junior P.J. Thomason and freshmen Meisha Mason and Grace Anne Dowden are starting on the wing, and sophomore Samantha Congleton is down low in the post. Junior Shelby Cannon and the three new middle schoolers are providing minutes off the bench.

“We have a lot to work on. We have to continue to get our fundamentals down,” Martin said about his young, inexperienced squad. “If we can continue to work on our fundamentals and play hard, we’ll be alright.”

Raisor knocked down two three-point baskets and scored a team-high 11 points in Eminence’s first game of the KCD Holiday Tournament last Monday night, but the Lady Warriors lost by 29 points to the host school. Congleton scored eight points, Thomason scored five, Mason scored two and Bryant scored one.

KCD was ahead 14-12 after the fist quarter, 26-9 at the half and outscored Eminence 30-18 during the final two quarters. KCD, who improved to 4-3 with the win, was led in scoring by Shelbi Hendricks with a game-high 23 points.

The Lady Warriors were back in action the following day when they lost to Whitefield Academy by 46 points. Whitefield was ahead 25-6 in the first quarter and 41-15 at the half.

Thomason hit three three-pointers and led Eminence in scoring with 13 points. Congleton scored seven, Raisor scored four, Carroll scored two and Mason scored one.

Meanwhile, Whitefield had nine players score and three reach double digits. Whitefield improved to 5-4 with the win.

Despite a strong 20-point performance from Raisor, Eminence closed out the tournament with an 18-point loss to Shawnee on Wednesday. It left Eminence winless in 11 tries this season and gave Shawnee its third win of the season at 3-7.

Eminence has a busy stretch this week with four games in five days. The Lady Warriors hosted KCD on Tuesday, hosts Brown this Thursday at 6:30 p.m., and travels to Louisville Collegiate on Friday and Anderson County on Saturday. The Anderson matchup is Eminence’s first 30th District game this season.

E-mail us about this story at sports@hclocal.com.