Only One Of Three Players In Team's 44 Year History To Reach Milestone
While the team suffered their first loss of the season in a big way to Mercer County (7-1) 81-49 tonight, there was still plenty to be proud of for the Lady Cats as Senior Caitlin Simon joined the 2,000 point club in a 30 point, 10 rebound performance in tonight's game in the Bullitt East Tournament.
Simon, who is averaging 21.8 ppg (tied for 17th in the state) is on pace to become Edmonson County's leading scorer in the history of Lady Cat basketball. The current record is 2,390 points, which was set by Stephanie Dennison in 1995.
The Lady Cats had their hands full tonight right off the bat with the defending state champions as they got off to an ice cold start and a 12-0 deficit in the first quarter. They fought their way back with an 8-3 run that cut the lead to 15-8 going into the second, but Mercer County--a team with five starters who have signed to play college basketball--was too big, too fast, and too hot from behind the arc for the Lady Cats to match.
"There's a reason they're number one in the state and 5th or 6th in the nation," said Coach Kevin Jackson. "They're the best all-around team I've ever coached against. We knew it would be a challenge and our game plan was to try to hold them in the low 60s, but they hit 13 of 27 threes, and by five different shooters. They're so good in transition and they were in our face for 32 minutes. All the credit goes to them."
Jackson said it was a good learning experience for his team and he knows they'll bounce back; although they'll face a tough Elizabethtown team tomorrow at 2pm CST. Even in the loss, he was happy for Simon, who reached the point milestone tonight.
"You know, 2000 points is such a feat in high school basketball and she's only the third Lady Cat in 44 years of basketball to achieve that," he said. "If she stays healthy I know she'll add to that. She'll also tell you she couldn't do it without her teammates, because when you have a guard like Peyton Martin who can dish those assists, it gives players like Caitlin the opportunities to finish, and she certainly knows how to do that. Caitlin has sure put in the hard work and she deserves the credit."
It was an emotional moment for Simon, who said she didn't realize she was that close to the mark when she stood at 1,999 points at the free throw line.
"I thought I was still several points away," she said. "But I hit it and Coach Jackson called a timeout and they announced it over the speakers at the gym, and that was really cool."
She said once she hit the 1000 mark as a sophomore she could see that reaching 2000 was possible.
"I knew that if I ever hit 2000 I'd have to stay at it and keep scoring when I had the chance, so I'm just glad I was able to."
Jackson said the scorer's table passed the info along to him and he called timeout.
"Coach Sowders (of Mercer) was great about it. He told me to take all the time we needed and do whatever we needed to do. It was a really nice moment for Caitlin and our team."
Simon sits at number three on the all-time scoring list behind Madison Rich (2,135 points) and Dennison.
The Lady Cats fall to 7-1 on the season. Simon was the only Lady Cat in double figures tonight. Also helping the Lady Cats was Peyton Martin with 9 points, Collins, Ballance, Harrison, and Vincent each added 2 and Logsdon and Lindsey each added 1.