Monday, December 15, 2008

GIRLS HOOPS: Renaissance vs. Arthur Hill

**Corie Buchanan soars to the basket**
**Lorreal Jones is a force in the paint**
**Kiah Douglas runs a fastbreak**
**Juanita Cochran and Amber McKithen battle for a rebound**

Saginaw- Saturday marked the annual James Monroe Classic at Arthur Hill High School, where four varsity games took place. The third game of the day, host Arthur Hill vs. Detroit Renaissance, featured two of the top teams in the state year in and year out.

Arthur Hill started the game in a tight 2-3 zone, with 6-2 center Juanita Cochran anchoring the middle. The zone forced Renaissance to shoot from outside where the Phoenix struggled to make shots early on. Offensively, Arthur Hill went inside to Cochran who had a big size advantage. Cochran's 10 first half points helped Arthur Hill have a 26-23 halftime lead.

Lorreal Jones scored the first four points of the second half to give Renaissance a 27-26 lead. The Phoenix went on a 10-0 run to close the third and open the fourth to take a 45-37 lead, Jones and sophomore Asia Boyd sparked the run.

Down eight points with time running out, Corie Buchanan took control of the game. The junior guard led a Lumberjack comeback and scored six of the Hill's next eight points. Buchanan's "and 1" play tied the game at 50-50 with 2:03 to play. Buchanan then tossed two assist to Kiah Douglas to help Douglas score the next six points of the game to give Arthur Hill a 56-50 lead with 1:09 left to play. The Lumberjacks finished the Phoenix off at the free throw line to take a 62-54 win.

BREAKDOWN- Renaissance let a lead slip away and that was because they couldn't stop Buchanan or Douglas late in the game. Arthur Hill played consistent defense four four quarters and that was the key in the win. The Hill improves to 2-1 and with Cochran, Buchanan, and Douglas, the Hill can compete with any team in the state. The same can be said for Renaissance, with standout forwards Jones and Boyd leading the way. Renaissance falls to 2-2 with close losses to Arthur Hill and Country Day.

PLAYER OF GAME: Corie Buchanan, Hill, 5-7 guard- the junior proved on the big stage that she is one of the state's elite. She was consistent for all four quarters but when her team needed it, she took over. She knocked down long shots and got to the basket at ease to finish with a game high 23 points to go with 6 assist, 5 steals, and 5 rebounds.


Juanita Cochran, Hill, 6-2 center- Cochran's play was just as big for her team as Buchana's was. She is a force to deal with in the paint and usually draws double teams, allowing her teammates to get high percentage shots. Cochran did miss allot of easy shots but she still finished with 18 points to go with 14 boards.

Kiah Douglas, Hill, 5-6 guard- I still feel that if Douglas didn't get hurt last year that the Hill would have won a state title. She still doesn't look quite 100% but even at 80% she is as good as anyone in the state. She just does so much for her team and brings so much energy. She chipped in with 16 points, 8 coming in the fourth quarter.

Lorreal Jones, Ren., 6-0 fwd- Jones is a tough one and gives the Phoenix some inside muscle. The junior also has the game to handle the ball on the perimeter and play on the wing. In the second half Jones' play allowed Renaissance to take the lead. Jones finished with 13 points and 8 rebounds.

Asia Boyd, Ren., 6-0 fwd- Boyd is one of the top sophomores in the state. She's a big time recruit with plenty of skills. She paced her team with 13 points and 12 boards while playing all five positions.

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