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Kirkwood Eagles invite South Australia

By Juana Jones
On November 29, 2018

On  Tuesday,  Nov.  20,  Kirkwood  welcomed  special  guests  from  overseas  to  play  in  a  friendly  game  of  basketball.  

The  Kirkwood  women’s  basketball  team  played  against  the  South  Australia  Blue  Devils.  According  to  South Australia Coach Neil  Gliddon  they  have  sent  a  team  to  the  United  States  for  almost  30  years.  They  first  played  in  Kirkwood  1991  and  have  since  continued  to  come  back.

The  South  Australia  Blue  Devils  was  made  up  of  nine  high  school  girls  given  the  once  in  a  lifetime  chance  to  play  in  the  United  States.  Gliddon  said, “They  were  picked  from  a  number  of  clubs  all  in  one  city.” 

They do not play on the same team while in Australia so their  game  against  Kirkwood  was  only  the  second  time  they  competed  as  a  team. This  in  comparison  to  Kirkwood, where  some  members  have  played  together many times before.

As  a  sign  of  friendship  between  KCC  and  the  guests, the Australians were presented with  shirts  as  a  welcome  gift, as  well  as  starting  the  game  off  by  playing  the  Australian  National  Anthem  before  playing  the United States’ national  anthem.

Even  with  the  Australian  team  being  made  of  younger  and  less  experienced  members  they  put  up  a  fight.  They  scored  18  points  in  the  first  quarter  followed  by  tying  with  19  points  in  the  second  before  falling  behind  in  the  second  half.  It  was  in  the  third  quarter  the  Kirkwood  girls  stepped  up  their  game, building a 13-point  lead  and  sealed  the deal in  the  fourth  quarter  when  they  scored  an  additional  7  points.  Australia’s  top  shooters  were  #8  Portia  Size  and  #13  Jordyn  Freer  who  both  scored  13  points  each.  Kirkwood’s  top  shooters  were  number  #14  Anasha  Hurst,  #24  Haley  Mullinnix  and  #50  Ashley  Tull  who  all  scored  16  points  each.  The  final  score  was  93-72,  Kirkwood’s  win. 

Kirkwood girls exchange gifts with the Australian team as a sign of good faith on Nov. 20. Photo by Juana Jones.

Players of South Australia Blue Devils make their way down the court during an expedition game on Nov 20th. PHOTO BY JEFF SIGMUND.

Jheda Kennedy freshman cuts across court during a game against visiting South Australia Blue Devils on Nov 20. PHOTO BY JEFF SIGMUND.



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