RICHMOND — Newport Central Catholic doesn't have any big-name players.
It doesn't have a star on the roster.
But the Thoroughbreds proved that by playing together, they can shine as bright as that shiny Touchstone Energy All "A" Classic trophy they took home after their 56-40 win over Louisville Holy Cross on Sunday afternoon.
"It's very unique, and it's very unselfish," senior guard Courtney Sandfoss said of her team, which didn't have a player averaging more than 11 points a game coming into the tournament. "That's what this team is about: being a team."
Never miss a local story.
That team, ranked No. 7 in the state, took home the school's first small-school state championship behind four players in double figures and stellar defense.
"Everybody's averaging about 10 points a game, and everybody's playing great defense," Coach Ron Dawn said. "That's been our story all year."
This chapter of their story had a quick beginning and a happy ending with the Thoroughbreds racing to a 10-1 lead and never looking back.
"This is amazing; I've never felt anything like this," Sandfoss said before cutting down the net at McBrayer Arena as the tourney's Most Valuable Player. "It's so fun."
NewCath, which won its 13th straight game and has won 17 of its last 18, forced Holy Cross into 23 turnovers and turned them into 24 points.
The Breds had 18 steals in the win, including Brittany Fryer's game-high six swipes, which equaled the total number of steals for the Cougars.
"We've got good quickness, and we anticipate," Dawn said. "We work on that every single day. Our kids always look for where the next pass is, and that's the whole key and then hustling back on defense."
Hannah Thiem led NewCath with 14 points, followed by Mariah Tabor's 13 points, Fryer's 12 and Kiley Bartels' 10. Bartels also had five steals.
Tabor added seven rebounds and four steals for the winners.
Sandfoss was the only Thoroughbreds starter who wasn't in double figures, but she did her part with seven points, eight assists and three steals.
Holy Cross was led by Olivia Moore's 10 points, nine rebounds, four assists and three steals. Kim Mingus added nine points.
Newport Central Catholic 56 Louisville Holy Cross 40
All 'A' Classic at Richmond
Newport Central Catholic (17-2) — Thiem 14, Bartels 10, Sandfoss 7, Fryer 12, Tabor 13.
Louisville Holy Cross (20-6) — Mingus 9, Rickert 2, Moore 10, Richardson 4, Deckard 5, Roarx 4, Hardin 6.
Newport Cent. Cath. 14 15 18 9—56
Louisville Holy Cross 4 11 14 11—40
MVP—Courtney Sandfoss, Newport Central Catholic
Mariah Tabor, Hannah Thiem, Kiley Bartels, Newport Central Catholic; Robin Deckard, Kim Mingus, Olivia Moore, Lou. Holy Cross; Janssen Starks, Haley Armstrong, Murray; Becca Greenwell, Kaley Robertson, Owensboro Catholic; Sarah Beth Barnette, Lexington Christian; Kelsea Mitchell, Green Co.