The long shots and layups of Shelbyville Sport Shop helped them defeat the New York Gazelles 75-71 and capture the AAU Girls 15-Under National Championship Thursday in Winston-Salem, N.C.
KeKe Stewart, a 6-2 junior, scored 23 points, winning the battle inside against Gazelle Tina Charles to lead her team to victory along with help from her perimeter - Kenzie Rich (17 points), Leah Stone (12) and Jackie Pickel (10).
Making eight 3-point shots, Rich's, Stone's and Pickel's sharp shooting proved deadly for New York.
Stone came off the bench early, putting three of her four 3-pointers through the net in the first half and helping Shelbyville to gain a 39-28 lead. Then coach Matt Insell used his father's (Rick Insell) defensive style of play -- a full-court press -- to take charge.
The Gazelles forced seven Sport Shop turnovers in four minutes during the second half to tie the score at 62-all.
Shelbyville again went to Stewart, who put it in for two, then kicked it back out to their perimeter for a 10-2 run on New York. The Gazelles couldn't recover.
Shelbyville made it to the final after beating the East Bay Xplosion (Calif.) in an 83-65 routing earlier in the day. Rich led the way to victory with 31 points with Stewart adding 18.