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Davie County girls top South Rowan

By Dennis Davidson

dennis.davidson@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY —Davie County’s girls pulled away late to defeat South Rowan, 63-46, in the consolation round of the Dale’s/Sam Moir Christmas Classic on Tuesday afternoon at Goodman Gym.

Davie, now 7-6, had lost a close, 49-44 decision to championship game-bound North Rowan on Monday, so the War Eagles probably welcomed a game against the young, 2-10 Raiders.

But it wasn’t easy, because first-year South coach John Davis has his team improving almost each time out.

Behind freshman Janiya Downs’ 16 points and 12 from Riley Corriher, the Raiders led early, fell behind by double digits, got it close again and then lost by 17 points.

Coach Dave Ruemenapp’s Eagles led, 42-29, going into the final period. Behind a three-point basket from Downs, a steal and layup from Corriher and two treys from another freshman, Rhiannon Kimmer, it was suddenly a nine-point game at 50-41 with 4:45 left.

Unfortunately, at the 4:20 mark, Downs was fouled while driving to the basket and fell to the floor, apparently hitting her head. Downs lay still for several minutes before trainers and her parents led her to the South locker room. She did not return to the game.

Inspired, the Raiders kept coming. Kimmer knocked down another three-pointer and two free throws from Malaysia Williams cut the deficit to 52-46 with 2:36 left.

But South would score no more and Davie got key layups and clutch free throws from Ashlyn Hampton, Caitlyn Peebles, Patterson Jones and Morgan Lewis to end the game on an 11-0 run.

Peebles, a 5-8 senior who plays taller inside, had an outstanding game for Davie, leading all scorers with 18 points while also grabbing a game-high 11 rebounds, six on the offensive glass.

Hampton, a 6-1 junior, was another force inside, scoring 13 points and grabbing nine boards. Patterson Jones, a hustling 5-7 guard, came with nine rebounds as well, to go along with six points.

From the outside, the Eagles’ sharp-shooter Madison Zaferatos scored 13 points, including three 3-pointers in the second quarter, erasing South’s first period, 13-8 lead.

Behind Peebles, Hampton, Zaferatos and Jones, Davie outscored South, 20-8, in the second quarter, taking a 28-19 halftime advantage.

“Davie County is a real solid team and I knew we’d have our hands full, but it’s good to see our girls growing,” said Davis. “I thought Kimmer came in and played really well at times, Janiya is gonna be Janiya and Malaysia played well inside when she got into the game.

“We’re playing better basketball, but the competition is good in this tournament,” continued Davis. “West Rowan, the first time we played them, they got us pretty good, and we gave them a good run yesterday (Monday). We’re still a work in progress but I thought our girls battled real tough today. (Tuesday)”

South plays in the first game today (9 a.m.), against Salisbury for seventh place. Davie plays Mooresville for fifth place at 12 noon.

SOUTH ROWAN (46) — Chabala 3, Downs 16, Carsen Carlton, Kimmer 12, Corriher 6, Rollins 3, Smith, Williams 6, Hardin, Samples.

DAVIE COUNTY (63) — Zaferatos 13, Slabach 4, Hampton 13, C. Peebles 18, Jones 6, A. Peebles 7, Crenshaw, Cockerham, Lewis 2.

South Rowan    13     6   10   17 — 46

Davie County     8   20   14   21 — 63

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