Basketball

Shreve girls rout Covington, extend historic hoops run

Aaliyah Stevenson scored 15 points in Captain Shreve's first-round playoff victory Thursday.

Aaliyah Stevenson scored 15 points in Captain Shreve’s first-round playoff victory Thursday.

Head coach Keith Greene and the Captain Shreve Lady Gators appreciate the fact they’ve made history, but they’re not finished rewriting the record books.

Thursday, Shreve showed no letdown from capturing its first district crown in school history (50 years) when it hosted Covington in a first-round Class 5A girls basketball playoff game at The Swamp.

In a span of 45 seconds early in the second quarter of a tight game, three different Lady Gators nailed 3-pointers to key a 13-0 run that set the stage for an 81-51 romp.

“We came out a little nervous,” Greene said. “Once those 3s went down, we actually got a little relaxed and we started to play.”

School officials believe Thursday’s victory was Shreve’s first girls playoff basketball win.

“God has blessed us – there has been a lot of hard work,” Greene said. “I just credit the girls for the grind, the process and just sticking with it. They’ve been rewarded for that.”

After Covington pulled within one point (16-15) with a bucket to begin the second quarter, the Lady Gators scored 21 of the next 23 points. The surge was ignited by long-distance makes from NeNe Johnson, Aaliyah Stevenson and Kennedi Heard.

“It’s a fun style to play,” said Stevenson, who scored 15 points with the aid of three 3-pointers. “We don’t let up at all.”

Eighth-seeded Shreve (26-5) moves on to face a District 1-5A foe, No. 9 Southwood, in the second round. The game will be held at The Swamp on Monday at 6 p.m.

Heard (16 points) led a quartet of Lady Gators in double figures. Victoria Hart added 12 points while Kay Armstrong chipped in 10.

“We try to push the ball a lot – I have a few (girls) that can score so that’s the way we try to play,” Greene said.

Tasio McDowell led Covington with 14 points. Alyssa McIntyre (13) and Toni Deviniti (12) also reached double digits in scoring.

The historic ride moves on for the Captain Shreve girls, who thrive on a fast pace they hope creates more damage as the tournament moves on.

“Hopefully we can get one of those good draws and wear teams down,” Greene said.

The Lady Gators have won 11 straight games, and Stevenson figures there’s no sense in stopping Shreve’s monumental run anytime soon.

“We made history – the first to win district,” she said.  “We want history to continue and make it to state.”

Twitter: @RoyLangIII