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Monacan’s Jordan Hodges drives between Varina defenders and shoots during their TDIT game at Douglas Freeman. Hodges scored 29 points in the Chiefs’ 72-48 victory.

There was a time when Monacan sophomore Jordan Hodges wasn’t this comfortable shooting 3s. When she was a middle school player, she could handle the ball and drive to the basket, but sinking long distance shots wasn’t her forte.

So she spent hours in the gym each of the past two summers putting up 300 or 400 jump shots a day. Now, making five in one game, as she did Wednesday, isn’t out of the ordinary for her.

Hodges scored 29 points as No. 4 Monacan defeated No. 8 Varina 72-48 in the first round of the TDIT. Monacan will face Highland Springs on Thursday at 5 p.m. in the semifinals at Hanover High School. Varina opposes Steward at 10:30 a.m. at Hanover in the consolation bracket.

Monacan (3-1) led 24-7 at the close of the first quarter, but allowed Varina (4-3) to creep back into the game. Monacan’s lead was as tight as 35-31 in the third quarter. That’s when the Chiefs scored 12 consecutive points, pulled away and never let Varina back in.

Sports reporter

Eric Kolenich writes sports stories for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, focusing on local athletes and teams. He graduated from the University of Virginia in 2008 with a BA in English and joined the paper in 2009. (804) 649-6109

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