The Georgia Sting’s Malia Kency dribbled and spotted teammates running down the floor on a break. All she needed to give was a quick glance to make the defenders commit elsewhere, leaving the lane open for her to finish.
The guard and the rest of the team used speed and their transition game to pull away in the second half, beating Central Florida Elite, 61-46, on Sunday evening at Augusta State’s Christenberry Fieldhouse in the Peach State Basketball Elite 32 Summer Jam II. With the win, the Georgia Sting play at 7 tonight.
“We’re a running team,” said Kency, who will play for Briarwood Academy this upcoming season after playing for Grovetown the previous two seasons. “It’s pretty fun to run.”
The running style played a key role in the game-securing 19-3 second-half run that included points from five different players. Aiken’s Erin Gilmore got the spurt started and tied the game at 38; Kency finished it off with that driving layup and a 3-pointer. Kency scored 12 points in the game.
Briarwood’s Tiffany Pate also contributed during the spurt, including putting in back-to-back baskets on her way to 16 points.
The run helped the Georgia Sting overcome a couple of early second-half 3-pointers by Central Florida Elite, as one deep make from Destinee Walker gave the Florida team the lead at 33-31. Walker’s three came toward the end of an 18-5 stretch where the local team’s offense struggled.
“They changed up their defense,” said the Sting’s Jahmia Bradley, who plays for Westside. “They packed the middle so we couldn’t drive.”
But the Georgia Sting forced a few turnovers and Bradley fired a perfect pass to Westside teammate Azia Gibson for an easy finish.
In minutes, the area squad went from in trouble to in command.
“We just run,” Georgia Sting coach Erice Kency said. “If they can catch us, they beat us.”