Junior stars lead Demonettes to Elite Eight

WARNER ROBINS -- Juniors Kenyona Armstrong and Diamond Hudson combined for 50 points and Warner Robins earned a spot in the state quarterfinals for the first time in 15 years as the Demonettes scored an impressive 89-65 win over North Clayton in a GHSA Class AAAA second-round game Tuesday.

Warner Robins (23-6) will play either Fayette County or Mundy’s Mill at 7 p.m. on Friday at Fort Valley State. North Clayton closed its season at 21-8.

Warner Robins last advanced to the Elite Eight in 1996. That was also the last time prior to this season that the Demonettes won a region title. The 1996 team finished as state runnerup.

“This team is gelling and peaking at the right time,” head coach Tom Mobley said.

Armstrong scored 27 points to lead all scorers. Hudson chipped in 23. Each hit five 3-point shots.

Hudson scored 19 of her 23 points before intermission, including 12 in the second quarter. Armstrong took over in the third quarter, scoring 16 points with four 3-pointers.

“I just felt like I had to go out and get some points for my team,” Armstrong said.

The Demonettes scored 54 points in the second and third quarters combined to take control of the game.

Meanwhile, North Clayton struggled to maintain possession of the basketball. The Eagles turned the ball over 30 times. Miranda Cantrell delivered 22 points from the post, but her teammates couldn’t get the ball to her enough.

“We had to use our speed and quickness,” Armstrong said. “Their post players were very physical. We had to put pressure on the guards, run the floor and get every loose ball we could.”

Even the Demonettes’ misses turned into three points. Hudson and Asha Stegall converted traditional 3-point plays on put-backs of missed three-point attempts by their teammates.

Playing aggressively throughout, Warner Robins got the Eagles in early foul trouble. Three North Clayton eventually fouled out.

In addition to the turnovers, North Clayton committed four violations on free throws.