MARIETTA — Sylvia Kahoro scored 10 of her 12 points in the fourth quarter as Kell defeated Creekview 51-37 in the first round of the Class AAAAAA state tournament Tuesday.
The Lady Longhorns (24-3) advanced to the second round and will face Habersham Central on Friday.
The Region 6AAAAAA champions won their 15th straight game and outscored Creekview 13-5 in the fourth quarter, with Kahoro going 6-of-7 from the free-throw line within the final minute.
Defense and rebounding was also key.
Kell held Creekview scoreless for 4 minutes while Amaya Moss dominated the glass with 21 rebounds. In addition to her nine points, Jada Green also pulled down 13 rebounds.
“We just kind of grinded it out to the end, and we pulled away,” Kell coach Tony Ingle Jr. said.
The game was close the entire first half. Creekview led 14-12 after the first quarter and the game was tied 25-25 at the half.
“(Creekview) came out really aggressive, playing hard,” Ingle said. “They’re another great-coached team, and they play fundamentally sound basketball.”
The Lady Longhorns opened the third quarter on a 7-0 run with a layup from Green, a Crystal Henderson 3-pointer and a layup from Kahoro to build the lead to seven at 32-25.
Martin ended the run with a 3-pointer and followed with a layup. The junior led the Lady Grizzlies with 15 points.
Two layups from Henderson and Gregory increased the lead, and another layup from Green gave the Lady Longhorns a 38-30 advantage — the team’s largest lead of the night.
Chloe Williams closed the period with a basketball to pull Creekview within 38-32. Williams finished with nine points, followed by Taylor Collins’ eight.
Kell finished the game with three of its five scorers in double digits, with Gregory at 16, Kahoro at 12 and Henderson at 10.