Latta girls finish strong in Kingston

Jan. 10—KINGSTON — After a disappointing Day 1 loss, the Latta High School girl's basketball team rebounded with back-to-back victories at the 2024 Kingston New Year's Classic.

Latta edged Atoka 41-39 in the consolation semifinals before corralling the Marlow Lady Outlaws 45-24 in Saturday's consolation title contest.

The Lady Panthers ranked No. 17 in Class 2A, improved to 9-5 on the year, and were scheduled to host Silo on Tuesday. Latta will then take a week off before traveling to Stratford on Jan. 16.

Consolation Championship

Latta 45, Marlow 24

It was all Latta in the first half. The Lady Panthers jumped out to an 18-3 lead after the first quarter and had stretched the advantage to 25-5 by halftime.

Latta girls coach Clay Plunk was glad to see his team get off to a good start.

"We came out and played as a unit today. We shot it well in the first and forced some turnovers to get us going, and really locked down defensively in the first half," Plunk told The Ada News. "It gave us an opportunity to get some reps for our bench in the second half, which will help us down the road. Anytime you can go 3-1 in a tournament week, is a good week."

Jayse Smith paced the LHS club with 13 points, including a trio of 3-pointers. Jakobi Worcester just missed double figures with nine points and Kelbey Parnacher was close behind with eight points.

Kate Williams added seven points in the balanced Latta offense.

Gracie Ottinger led the Marlow offense with 11 points. Demi Hunt was next with seven.

Consolation Semifinals

Latta 41, Atoka 38

With Latta trailing 37-36 with less than a minute to play, Kelby Parnacher stole the ball and dished it to teammate Savannah Senkel, who hit a go-ahead layup and the Lady Panthers never trailed again.

Latta held a slim 8-7 lead after the first quarter but trailed 16-12 at the break. Latta outscored the Lady Wampus Cats 13-6 in the third period to grab a 25-22 lead heading into the fourth quarter.

"We didn't shoot it well today but had some kids step up and fill some offensive gaps. The girls kept grinding even when we weren't playing well and kept hanging around," Plunk said. "We were able to force a couple of turnovers late that led to five straight points to put us back out in front and we sealed it at the free-throw line."

Jakobi Worcester had a nice night in the paint, leading the LHS offense with 11 points. Senkel just missed double figures with nine points and Jayse Smith was next with eight. Kate Williams hit a pair of 3-pointers for her six points.

Both Kaylee Washington and Hadli Campbell scored 12 points to pace the Atoka offense.