OPENING UP: Southwestern coach Kenny Garrett (above) directs his team during the girls basketball season opener at Charlestown. Southwestern’s Cheyenne McKinley (below, 33) battles with the Pirates’ Justin Burdin (32) and Taylor Thrasher for a rebound. The Rebels lost the game 64-37, Garrett’s first as coach. (Staff photos by David Campbell)
OPENING UP: Southwestern coach Kenny Garrett (above) directs his team during the girls basketball season opener at Charlestown. Southwestern’s Cheyenne McKinley (below, 33) battles with the Pirates’ Justin Burdin (32) and Taylor Thrasher for a rebound. The Rebels lost the game 64-37, Garrett’s first as coach. (Staff photos by David Campbell)
CHARLESTOWN - Southwestern struggled to score all night and the result was a 64-37 loss to Charlestown in the Lady Rebels' season opener on Thursday.

The Rebels trailed 14-0 at one point and hit only one shot from the floor in the first half en route to the lopsided loss. Things got better for Southwestern in the second half but by then it was too late.

"Charlestown is a good team and they showed that tonight," said Kenny Garrett, who was making his coaching debut at Southwestern. "They have three girls that are around six foot and are very active and they have some very good guards. I thought we could give them trouble with our press but the guards were just too good."

Charlestown's size certainly changed some of Southwestern's shots but the Rebels were also a victim of bad luck with several open shots just rimming out.

The Pirates (1-0) didn't run away from Southwestern but rather slowly added baskets while the Rebels struggled. It was just an 8-0 game halfway through the first quarter when Charlestown's Kaitlynn Henning hit a 3-pointer, knocked down a free throw and scored a basket in transition to build the 14-0 lead.

Southwestern (0-1) finally got on the scoreboard with a pair of Savannah Hubbard free throws with 28 seconds left in the first quarter but the Rebels still trailed 16-2 at the end of the frame.

Charlestown built its lead to 20-2 early in the second period before Southwestern began chipping away, thanks mainly to Hubbard and her ability to get to the free-throw line. The senior went to the line on three-straight possessions and hit 5-of-6 freebies to get the Rebels back on track.

Sydnie McKinley added a free throw and then hit a runner in the lane to cap an 8-0 run for Southwestern and close the gap to 20-10. McKinley's shot with 4:27 left in the second quarter was the Rebels' first made shot from the floor and their only field goal of the first half.

Southwestern couldn't maintain the momentum and Charlestown closed out the first half on a 9-1 run to take a 29-11 lead into halftime

The Pirates opened the third quarter on a 10-2 run to blow the game wide open and the rout was on.

Despite the lopsided final score, Garrett found a little sunshine in the loss. Charlestown didn't break 50 points in the game until two minutes into the fourth quarter although the Pirates did close the contest on a tear.

"I looked up early in the fourth quarter and (Charlestown) only had 48 points," Garrett said. "I thought defensively we did some very good things and we need to build on that."

Charlestown committed 29 turnovers in the game to Southwestern's 23 and was just 19-for-32 (59.4 percent) from the free-throw line. But the Rebels weren't much better on free throws with just 18-for-33 (54.5 percent) on the night.

The Pirates' Henning scored 23 points to lead all scorers while teammate Justice Burdin added 21 as the two sophomores outscored Southwestern by themselves.

Cheyenne McKinley scored 12 points, all in the second half, to lead Southwestern. Hubbard added a career-high 11 points off the bench.

"There are still some things we have to work on. I know the girls are upset but this is just one game and we don't have to see Charlestown again for the rest of the season," Garrett said. "We're still trying to adjust to some things and they're still getting used to me. I saw some things tonight that I didn't expect and there is a lot we can take away from this. We'll get back to work and get ready for Saturday."

The Rebels host Eastern (Pekin) in their home opener on Saturday. The team will honor all military veterans at the game with free admission.

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Thursday's Rebels Boxscore

at Charlestown

CHARLESTOWN 64,

SOUTHWESTERN 37



SOUTHWESTERN 2 9 11 15 - 37

CHARLESTOWN 16 13 17 18 - 64



SOUTHWESTERN (0-1) - (f)C. McKinley 12, Hubbard 11, (g)S. McKinley 8, Hardy 5, (c)Mahoney 1, (g)Lawson 0, (f)Courtney 0, Brawner 0, Ison 0.

CHARLESTOWN (1-0) - (g)Henning 23, (f)Burdin 21, (g)Moore 7, Harvey 6, (f)Thrasher 4, Brooks 2, Jones 1, (c)Young 0, Goedeker 0, Farmer 0.



3-Point Goals - Southwestern 3 (C. McKinley 2, S. McKinley 1), Charlestown 1 (Henning 1). Turnovers - Southwestern 23, Charlestown 25. Total Fouls - Southwestern 23, Charlestown 19. Free Throws - Southwestern 18-33, Charlestown 19-32. Fouled Out - Southwestern: Courtney, Charlestown: Young. Next Game - Southwestern hosts Eastern (Pekin) on Saturday. Charlestown visits Corydon Nov. 16.