3A girls basketball: Lincoln gets ‘A’ for its tough ‘D’

Contributing writerFebruary 20, 2014 

The Lincoln High girls basketball team knows all about relentless defense.

Coach Jamila Jones can’t go for very long in practice or on game day without talking about it.

It looks like the message has sunk in.

The Abes held Auburn Mountainview to one field goal in the second quarter and just eight points in the third quarter on the way to a 52-34 victory over the Lions on Wednesday night in a Class 3A West Central District quarterfinal matchup at Washington High School.

Lincoln advances to play Prairie in the semifinals at 7:45 p.m. Friday at Clover Park High.

“They’re doing it together and playing ‘D,’ ” Jones said. “We were dialed in (tonight).”

Trailing 10-6 after the first quarter, the Abes locked down the Lions, not giving up a basket until just 2 minutes, 55 seconds remained in the second quarter, when Sammi DePiano hit a tough runner in the lane. But Lincoln already had the upper hand, forcing nine turnovers in the quarter in leading at halftime, 18-12.

Things got no better for the Lions as Lincoln (17-4) extended the lead to 39-20 after three quarters. Although Auburn Mountainview did a good job quieting 3A Narrows MVP Tia Braggs on offense, the Abes found other ways to score. Point guard Kiaira Thomas scored 13 points, and Aamira Turner, Breneya Johnson and Kayla McLean added four apiece.

“When teams take away our first option on offense (Braggs), it takes us a while to settle in,” Jones said.

Nevertheless, Braggs finished with 13 points, nine rebounds and five blocks.

“She’s only a sophomore,” Jones said of Braggs. “She’s young, and she’s still learning.”

Brianna Zaragoza-Jones led Auburn Mountainview with 13 points.

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