AUGUSTA — The Huskies learned the most valuable of all postseason basketball tenets Tuesday afternoon.

After a two-week layoff and a two-point third quarter, No. 3 Kents Hill rallied and held off determined No. 6 Monmouth 40-38 in a Class C South girls basketball quarterfinal at the Augusta Civic Center.

“Survive and advance,” said Kents Hill coach R.J. Jenkins. “That’s what I just told the girls in the locker room. Just survive and advance.”

Jenkins daughter, senior guard Rose Jenkins, played a pivotal role for the Huskies, who did not have a preliminary round game and were unable to schedule a bona fide scrimmage after their regular season finale on Feb. 6.

Jenkins scored eight of her team-high 14 points in the fourth quarter, all of them in succession during a 16-2 Kents Hill run that turned a 30-22 deficit after three quarters into a 38-32 lead with 39 seconds remaining.

Kents Hill (17-2) will meet No. 2 Old Orchard Beach in a regional semifinal game Friday at 10 a.m. The victory Tuesday was the Huskies’ first in the postseason under Jenkins, who is in his fifth year.


Kents Hill lost in the quarterfinals in 2022 and didn’t advance out of the prelims in 2020.

After the Huskies managed just two points in the third period — a bucket from Logan McDonald — they finally found their rhythm for the stretch run.

“A lot of it was just our attitude and focusing on our game instead of the atmosphere,” Rose Jenkins said. “It was pretty easy to clear my head (after the third quarter). I know I can play good defense, I can get good rebounds, I can excel in other areas. As long as I’m confident in myself, the shots are going to fall.

“I think once we started lifting our spirits as a team, that’s when we got more confidence, myself included.”

Monmouth (13-7), which dropped its only regular-season meeting against Kents Hill on Feb. 1, took a 22-20 halftime lead and extended it in the third.

The Mustangs refused to quit when trailing by six inside the final minute. A Kaitlyn Frost three-pointer and a free throw pulled Monmouth to within 38-36 with 11.6 seconds remaining.


McDonald sank a pair of free throws with less than 10 seconds to play, and Monmouth didn’t have enough time to recover.

“I thought we settled down a little bit,” R.J. Jenkins said. “Our whole thing is we want to play defense, rebound and run. We started throwing the ball a little bit up the floor to try and get ahead of the defense. They were letting us hang around, and we started going to the hole … and we were a little bit more composed.

“It was not a thing of beauty.”

Kents Hill out-rebounded Monmouth 10-5, shot 40 percent from the floor and turned the ball over just three times in the final period. McDonald finished with a double-double (10 points, 11 rebounds), while Jenkins and Phoebe Simpson each hauled down eight boards in the victory.

Frost, who shot 3 of 4 from beyond the arc in the opening half, finished with a game-high 15 points for the Mustangs. Holly Hunt added 10 in the loss for Monmouth, which won only two of its final five games.

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