Salem beats KF from long range

Published 2:48 pm Friday, December 31, 2010

Down the lane: King’s Fork’s Chantel Roberts drives down the lane against Salem Thursday at Norcom. Roberts had five points and 12 rebounds. Salem beat KF 65-49 sending the Lady Bulldogs (3-6) into the third-place game in the Maroon bracket.

PORTSMOUTH — In opening the Norcom Christmas Tournament with a 55-30 rout over Kempsville on Wednesday, King’s Fork’s girls basketball squad controlled the action and tempo of the game.

The Lady Bulldogs (3-6) had the tables turned on them in their semifinal contest versus Salem Thursday night, as the Lady Sun Devils pressured King’s Fork all over the court and buried nine three-pointers for a 65-49 win.

King’s Fork matched up well against the athletic Lady Sun Devils most of the way. Quick bursts of either King’s Fork turnovers or Salem’s sharpshooting meant when Salem added to its lead, it usually did so by more than two or three points at a time.

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Salem raced out to a 14-5 lead and forced two Lady Bulldog timeouts in the first five minutes of play.

Chelsea Robinson’s three-point play, with a running shot along the baseline, brought KF within 14-10 and Salem took a 16-10 margin to the second period.

The Lady Bulldogs kept their momentum rolling, and Brittany Alston’s drive from the wing and short jump shot gave KF a short-lived 17-16 lead.

Seconds later, Salem answered with a trey and the next three Lady Sun Devil baskets were three-pointers, suddenly turning the game into a 28-19 Salem lead. Salem led 31-23 at halftime.

Center Khadedra Croker gave the Lady Bulldogs at least one position on the court in their advantage.

Croker scored three of the first four KF field goals in the second half. She made a turnaround bank shot from the low post followed by back-to-back fast-break lay-ups by Robinson. The 7-0 KF run cut Salem’s lead to 42-34 with 2:40 to go in the third period.

Salem regained the momentum in a big way. The Lady Sun Devils hit three triples in that 2:40 to take a 52-36 lead to the fourth quarter.

The Lady Bulldogs worked their way back to a nine-point margin a couple times in the fourth but couldn’t get closer.

Croker finished with 18 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots. Robinson had 11 points, four rebounds and four steals. Chantel Roberts had five points and 12 boards.

King’s Fork moved into Friday’s third-place game in the Maroon bracket of the Norcom tourney. The Lady Bulldogs go back to Southeastern District play Tuesday night hosting Great Bridge.