AUGUSTA — The Forest Hills girls basketball team came to Augusta without much depth, size or tournament experience. It showed in the Tigers’ 60-34 loss to No. 4 Seacoast Christian in the Western D quarterfinals Tuesday morning.

Ruth Towne and Kirin DeSmith each posted double-doubles for Seacoast Christian.

“They were bigger, stronger and more experienced,” Forest Hills coach Mike LeBlanc said. “They played with a lot of confidence, and that was what I was worried about.”

Towne finished with a game-high 26 points and 13 rebounds for the Guardians (16-3), who will play top-seeded Richmond at 11:30 a.m. Thursday. No. 5 Forest Hills ended the season 13-6.

DeSmith had a strong all-around game, finishing with 16 points, 15 rebounds, three blocked shots and five assists.

“Our defense was huge,” Seacoast coach Charlie Johnson said. “I knew we would get some opportunities on offense. We just kept crashing the boards. Getting it inside was the key. It was what we wanted to do. But we also played great defense. We’ve been holding teams to 25 points a game.”

Dana McNally scored a team-high 10 points and Keely Taylor added eight for Forest Hills.

“I knew we’d come out with some jitters, but I was hoping they would last for just a couple of minutes,” LeBlanc said. “But they stuck around a lot longer.”

Forest Hills doesn’t have a player 5-foot-6 or taller. Seacoast has two — the 5-foot-8 DeSmith and 5-9 Towne — and both were big factors Tuesday.

Towne dominated inside, grabbing seven offensive rebounds, while DeSmith kept the Tigers off-balance with some big outside shots.

“The height advantage was the biggest factor,” Towne said. “But our defense played great. Our defense really sets up our offense.”

Seacoast put the game away with an 18-0 run that spanned the end of the first quarter and into the second.

Towne scored eight points in the stretch, which pushed a 5-4 Seacoast lead to 23-4 with about four minutes left in the second quarter.

“We just got it into the taller people,” DeSmith said. “We were just scoring.”

The Guardians, who took advantage of 28 Forest Hills turnovers, led 31-15 at the half and then opened the third quarter with a 10-0 run.

Jocelyn Hoyt added six points and three assists for the Tigers.

Bill Stewart — 621-5640

[email protected]


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