LINCOLN–(KFOR Feb. 24)–Lincoln High’s girls basketball team has been on a mission since last season’s loss in the Class A state tournament semifinals to eventual state champion Fremont by finding a way to get back to state and finish what’s been started.
The Links are now on a 22-game win streak since their only loss of the season to Bellevue East on Dec. 3 and weathered challenges along the way, including that from Lincoln Northeast. For the third time this season, Lincoln High came out on the winning end against the Rockets, including Friday night’s 54-50 victory to claim the A-3 district championship at the Earl Johnson Gym.
The Links (23-1) are set to face Lincoln North Star, who upset Lincoln Pius X 36-35 in overtime to win the A-6 title, in next Wednesday’s 7:45pm quarterfinal game of the NSAA Class A State Tournament.
For Lincoln High, the win Friday night against Northeast proved they were able to step up to the challenge on any given night to try to get the job done. It wasn’t easy.
While the Links jumped out to a 15-11 first quarter lead behind Bri Robinson’s 10 points, the Rockets would not go away.
Northeast’s junior center Doneelah Washington managed to help offensively in the second quarter. The 6-1 junior hit a shot from just over the three-point line as time ran out to pull the Rockets to within four at halftime 30-26.
Lincoln High later jumped out to a nine-point advantage in the third quarter, before extending their lead to as much as 11, 41-30 early in the fourth quarter. Still, Northeast wouldn’t quit.
Washington had a couple of big baskets and a pair of free throws that pulled Northeast to within four 45-41 with less than 2:30 remaining in the game. Robinson, point guard Pip Harris and forward Kiana Wiley all helped Lincoln High down the stretch to pull away by scoring in transition, off turnovers and hitting free throws.
Robinson led the Links with 16 points, while Harris had 15 and Wiley finished with 10 points in the victory.
Washington scored a game-high 21 points for Northeast, while Khadijah Phillips finished with 13 points in the loss for the Rockets, who finished the season at 15-11.
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