, Port Arthur, Texas

January 17, 2014

Ford scores 33 in Lady Titans 69-50 win

Gabriel Pruett
The Port Arthur News

PORT ARTHUR — No matter what the Port Arthur Memorial Lady Titans did on Friday night, the La Porte Lady Bulldogs would never go away.

The score will show a 69-50 Memorial victory yet Lady Titans Coach Kevin Henry probably feels like his team barely got past the visiting Lady Bulldogs. “They didn’t go away easily,” Henry said. “We never felt comfortable until late in the fourth. They controlled the first three periods. They just kept coming.”

Another thing that kept coming were points from Memorial sophomore Jakeira Ford.

Ford scored a game-high 33 points to go with 13 rebounds. She had 19 points at the half and score 10 more points in the third quarter. Ford was 15-for-26 shooting.

“It wasn’t a surprise to win the game because we always believe we will win,” Ford said. “After the first half we needed to step up a little more as a team. We always want to win our home games. In the first half we slacked off on defense but we were able to correct it in the third.”

Henry said his team has been practicing the passing game as of late and making an extra pass was one of the goals for Friday’s game.

“We always want to make sure everyone is involved,” Henry said. “I have talked to the guards about getting the posts more touches down near the basket. What is great is we really did play as a team yet Jakeira scored 33. A lot of those points came off rebounds. That is her being aggressive and always being near the basket.”

The Lady Titans (7-1) as a team were 26-for-45 from the field while the Lady Bulldogs (3-5) finished 19-for-40 shooting.

La Porte was led by Elise Rodriguez who poured in 20 points o go with six rebounds.

Memorial, who was up 20-13 after the first period, could not pull away until the closing moments of the second quarter.

La Porte climbed to within seven at 29-22 before turnovers doomed the Lady Bulldogs.

Three straight La Porte giveaways led to six unanswered Memorial points to close out the first half with the Lady Titans on top 35-22.

La Porte would finish the night with 23 turnovers.

Memorial junior Joyce Kennerson got her offense going in the third with three, 3-pointers in the quarter.

Kennerson scored 12 points in the third and finished with 18 points, four rebounds and six steals.

Kennerson’s 12 points in the frame came close to outscoring La Porte in the same time as the Lady Bulldogs put in 14 points.

The Lady Titans led 59-35 heading to the fourth period.

La Porte still would not give up as the Lady Bulldogs closed the gap to 15 points at 61-44. The La Porte effort forced Henry to put his starters back in the game to close it out.

Memorial ended the game on a 8-4 run.

“I was hoping La Porte wouldn’t come out and hit as many shots as they did,” Henry said. “We have to do a little bit better going forward on defense. We allowed too many second and third chance shots in the first half. We then started to mix up the man and zone defenses in the second half to give them different looks. I am pleased with the win.”

Memorial will be home again on Tuesday when the Lady Titans face Deer Park.