RICHMOND — Newport Central Catholic, rated the seventh-best girls' basketball team in Kentucky, has a chance to prove it's No. 1 among small schools.
The Thoroughbreds routed Murray 71-49 in the semifinals of the Touchstone Energy All "A" Classic on Saturday in McBrayer Arena.
NewCath will try for its first small-school title Sunday afternoon when it faces Louisville Holy Cross. The Cougars beat Owensboro Catholic 59-47 in their semifinal game.
Holy Cross won the All "A" championship twice in the 1990s.
NewCath didn't have much trouble against Murray, which suffered its first loss of the season to a Kentucky foe.
The Thoroughbreds raced to a 9-0 lead and never looked back. They had four players in double figures — Hannah Thiem (17 points), Mariah Tabor (16), Kiley Bartels (14) and Courtney Sandfoss (13).
NewCath had 22 assists and just five turnovers. Murray had only four assists and 23 turnovers.
The Tigers were led by Janssen Starks' 14 points. Haley Armstrong had 12 points and six rebounds.
Louisville Holy Cross 59, Owensboro Catholic 47: After a nip-and-tuck first half, Holy Cross pulled away to earn a spot in the title game for the first time since it won the title in 1996.
Owensboro Catholic may have had the best player on the floor in freshman sensation Becca Greenwell, but Holy Cross had the better team Saturday.
Olivia Moore, a 6-foot-2 senior, led the Cougars with 19 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Robin Deckard had 15 points, four assists and four steals. Lindsey Roarx had 11 points, 13 rebounds, four assists and five steals. Rachel Richardson had three points, six rebounds and nine assists.
Greenwell, a 5-11 guard, had 23 points, seven rebounds and three assists. In three tournament games she totaled 83 points, 32 rebounds, nine assists, eight steals and seven blocks.
Louisville Holy Cross 59Owensboro Catholic 47
Owensboro Catholic (12-12) — Yevincy 3, Greenwell 23, Clemens 6, Robertson 15, Riney 0.
Louisville Holy Cross (20-5) — Mingus 9, Moore 19, Richardson 3, Deckard 15, Roarx 11, Hardin 2.
Owensboro Catholic 14 8 15 10—47
Louisville Holy Cross 13 16 17 13—59
Newport Central Catholic 71, Murray 49
Murray (21-2) — Winchester 2, Armstrong 12, Benson 1, Starks 14, Sa.Crouch 5, Sh.Crouch 7, House 8.
Newport Central Catholic (16-2) — Bartels 14, Thiem 17, Sandfoss 13, Fryer 5, Ciafardini 2, Muench 4, Tabor 16.
Murray 8 12 11 18—49
Newport Central Catholic 19 17 18 17—71