Lady Bulldogs bench two starters in defeat
SIKESTON -- Sikeston's girls basketball team saw what life without Summer Ray and Joy Daniel would be like on Monday night against Cape Central.
And it wasn't pretty.
With the two starters benched the entire first half, Sikeston fell behind early and never could catch up, losing to the Lady Tigers 48-26.
The players were benched for missing Monday's pregame shoot-around.
"I almost didn't play them the whole game," said Sikeston coach Lee Brooks. "They both missed the shoot-around, and you need your leaders to be there. They are both good players and we need them. If we would've had them in the first half, I think we could've stayed even, but you never know."
Sikeston's bench players gave a spirited effort, but Cape Central's pressure defense was too much for the Lady Bulldogs to handle. The Lady Tigers altered nearly every Sikeston shot and forced 17 turnovers.
"Defensively, I think we do a good job," said Cape Central head coach Sheila Midgett. "When we really focus and can get that 5-second count, it really helps. We wanted to stay focused and not make any mental mistakes. At this time of the year, you want to play crisp."
Sikeston was held to five points in both the first and second quarters, as Cape Central held a 22-10 halftime advantage. In the first two quarters, Sarah Hyslop and Alex Weiser scored 17 of the Lady Tigers' 22.
"They've done a good job all year," said Midgett. "Both are capable of scoring, and both play good defense. We've also got other players that can score, but (Hyslop and Weiser) were the ones to carry us tonight."
Weiser led all scorers with 17 points and Hyslop finished with 15.
In the second half, Ray returned to the lineup and looked to spark Sikeston's offense with six points in the third quarter, but it didn't happen. Cape Central outscored the Lady Bulldogs 9-8 in the third, then 17-8 in the fourth to win the game 48-26.
"This team was very beatable," said Brooks. "Going in, I thought we really had a chance. I thought my bench players stepped in and played well though."
Jennifer Medlin paced Sikeston with 11 points, hitting two 3-pointers in the fourth quarter.
Cape Central (15-8) will host Perryville on Thursday. The Lady Tigers have also been seeded third in this year's 4A District 1 Tournament, which will be played at Poplar Bluff. They will face Jackson in the first round.
Sikeston (13-9) will host Delta on Thursday for the final game of the regular season. The Lady Bulldogs have been seeded fifth in this year's 3A District 1 Tournament, which will be played at Sikeston. They will face Perryville in the first round.
Sikeston won the junior varsity game over Cape Central, 38-25. Nyketia Johnson led the Lady Bulldogs with 15 points, followed by Mia Welch with 13.
Megan Richards scored 12 for Cape Central.