|VIDEO: Kennedy hangs on, tops Lakeland to earn county title|
It didn't come easy, but the Paterson Kennedy girls' basketball team earned its first Passaic County championship in nine seasons. The Knights held off a determined Lakeland squad, winning 37-26 behind a big game from Latice Cunningham.
Cunningham had 22 of her team's 37 points, while also grabbing 10 rebounds and making six steals. She made eight free throws, as Kennedy was able to seal the game at the foul line in the final minute.
Jayla McDuffie scored 13 points and nabbed eight rebounds for the second-seeded Knights. She and Cunningham combined for all but two of Kennedy's points in the contest.
Lakeland, which stunned top seed Paterson Eastside in the semifinals, kept the game close throughout and held the lead for a time in the third quarter.
Sarah Deighan led the Lancers with 10 points. Allison McBride had six points and Keira Marks scored five. Lakeland slips to 15-11 heading into the state tournament.
Kennedy is now 20-6. The Knights are one of the favorites to win the sectional title in North 1, Group IV.
For sports video highlights of this New Jersey and Passaic County Tournament high school girls' basketball game, click play in the box at left.