NSA fells Lady Oaks
Published 8:48 pm Saturday, February 21, 2015
The Nansemond-Suffolk Academy girls’ basketball team may have shown some rust, with no practices since Monday due to the weather, but the No. 2 Lady Saints were victorious in Saturday afternoon’s conference tournament quarterfinal.
They defeated visiting No. 7 Norfolk Collegiate School by the score of 53-30 before a sizable crowd.
NSA coach Kim Aston said the layoff affected her team on both sides of the ball but simply saw the reason for the 23-point win as being fundamental.
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“I think we’re a better team than they are,” she said.
The Lady Saints held a particularly strong advantage near the hoop as junior center Caroline Hogg led all scorers with 21 points, adding eight rebounds and five blocks.
Another key contributor for NSA down low was sophomore forward Kelly Hogan, who finished with eight points, 10 rebounds and three steals.
“She set the tone right out of the gate,” Aston said, as Hogan grabbed multiple offensive rebounds early on.
NSA junior point guard Harper Birdsong drew praise from Aston for handling and shooting the ball well. She finished with 13 points, six boards and six assists.
“I thought that we moved the ball well, offensively,” Birdsong said, but she acknowledged the Lady Saints’ defense was lacking.
Giving her recipe for dealing with the weather-induced layoff, she said, “I’ve just been working out on my own every day,” she said.
Though lack of practice time did not help Nansemond-Suffolk, Aston said, “I didn’t think anyone played poorly.”
They will need to elevate their game, though, to take on No. 3 Norfolk Academy in Sunday’s semifinals. The host Lady Bulldogs edged out No. 6 Walsingham Academy earlier in the day on Saturday.
“We have to play good defense tomorrow because they have Tyler (Moore) on their team,” Birdsong said, referring to one of the top scorers in the Tidewater Conference of Independent Schools.
The Lady Saints will host their TCIS tournament semifinal game, with the tip-off set for 2:30 p.m. The winner will play in the championship game at 5 p.m. on Monday at Hampton Roads Academy.