Turnovers giveth, turnovers taketh for Lady Dukes

Published 4:07 pm Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Leading by 10 points, and with their fans giving a standing ovation, it looked as if the Windsor High School Lady Dukes had the 2A East Regional basketball game in hand.

Windsor had ridden four Nottoway High School turnovers to a 10-2 run to close the third, giving them a 47-37 lead.

But that lead came crashing down in the fourth, as the Dukes Andrea Magba picked up her fourth foul in the opening seconds. With the center not able to contest lay ups, senior guard Ashley Love took over. She scored seven during the stretch, three from the line.

Lady Dukes Andrea Magba comes up with a turnover in a sea of red. -- Cain Madden | Tidewater News

Lady Dukes Andrea Magba comes up with a turnover in a sea of red. — Cain Madden | Tidewater News

When Magba came back in, the Dukes were down 54-47 with around two minutes to go.

Jazzmine Bynum hit a bucket to close the Dukes’ six-minute drought, and Love turned it over after the inbound. Suddenly the Dukes had a chance to close the gap. However, Bynum turned it over into the hands of Deona Dowtin, who took it all the way to the other side.

The Dukes had one more surge in them. Bridgette Walton closed it to four with 42 seconds left, hitting on one drive and getting to the free throw line on another.

On the inbound, the Dukes were in the full court press, and Magba was able to recover the turnover. However, Bynum gave it right back to the Lady Cougars.

The Lady Dukes were able to stop Nottoway coming out of a timeout, but on the other end, Taijii Skeeter was not able to connect on the 3-pointer. Magba grabbed the offensive rebound, but was unable to get her shot to fall.

Time expired and the Conference 34 three seed pulled off the slight road upset, and the Cougars improved to 15-6 on the season.

“We had two major turnovers — that’s something we have to work on,” head coach Sherry Ashburn said.

Meanwhile, the Conference 33 No. 2 seeded team had pulled off the best season anyone could remember for the Windsor Lady Dukes since the 1990s. With an overall record of 10-9 and making an appearance in the state tournament, Ashburn said it was a great season for the program.

For the game, Magba had 16 rebounds, six of them on the offensive side. She also had 10 points and two steals. On the season, the sophomore averaged 10.8 points and 10.5 rebounds per game.

Walton led with 23 points, and she contributed three assists and two steals. The point guard averaged 17.8 points on the season.

Vonquisha Turner had 10 points, nine rebounds, six assists, four steals and one block. The Dukes forward averaged 13.7 points per game on the season.

Although Ashburn said she is looking forward to next season, she’s going to do it sans six seniors: Bynum, Essence Santiago, Carlyn Stowe, Turner, Walton and Sydney Warren.

“It’s going to be a lot of work, but I know the girls will be playing hard for their former classmates,” Ashburn said. “I’m proud of my seniors — they put in a lot of hard work.”