With King missing its top player, Jackie Johnson, Jefferson coach LoriQuintana felt the Lions were ripe for an upset.
She was right.
Angela Ecezia pumped in 16 points to lead Jefferson (4-17) in a 50-44 upset of King in the opening round of the girls Class 4A, District 6 basketball tournament Thursday night at Gaither.
In Thursday's other game, Marcie Dortch scored 18 points to help
Chamberlain past Leto 69-54.
In tonight's semifinals, Chamberlain, the No. 4 seed, will play
second-seeded Gaither at 6 p.m. and Jefferson, the No. 5 seed, will take on top-seeded Gaither at 8 p.m. With Johnson, who is averaging double figures in points, assists and steals, out because of personal problems, King (10-15 and the No. 3 seed) had to rely on guard Erica Smith for its offensive production.
Smith answered the call with 26 points, including a three-pointer to cut a Jefferson lead to two points at the half, but the Lions still came up short.
"She (Smith) had a great night, but we felt if we could stop the rest of the team, we would be okay," Quintana said. "We did a good job moving the ball and getting the open shot."
Ecezia scored 10 points in the second half as the Dragons pulled away late in the game.
The Dragons outscored King 10-5 over the final seven minutes.
In the first game, Chamberlain (8-13) led by just two at halftime, but used a 21-12 third-quarter advantage to take control over Leto (3-19). Shawn Miller keyed the run with eight of her 11 points.
Meanwhile, the sophomore Dortch scored all of her 18 points in the second half to lead the defending district champion Chiefs.
Leto was led by Shanticia Taylor, who had 18 points, and Melia Davis, who added 16.