Delta erased an 11-point first quarter deficit with a halfcourt trap, that forced Kelly to commit eight turnovers in the second quarter.
After trailing 17-6 after one quarter, Delta used their defense to outscore Kelly 20-6 in the second and held Kelly to 16 total points for the rest of the contest, after the 17-point first quarter.
"Our defense brought us back," said Delta head coach Randy White. "We ran a halfcourt man-trap defense that caused them some problems and got us going in the second. We struggled tonight on offense, but we can always fall back on our defense."
Kelly got out to a fast start in the first, with a 8-3 run to begin the game. Led by the guard play of Brittany Ponder and Nikki Weiny, the Lady Hawks built a 14-6 lead with 40 seconds to play in the quarter. Katee Moore ended the first for Kelly, by hitting a 3-pointer. In the first, Ponder and Weiny finished with six points apiece for Kelly.
The Lady Bobcats notched up the defense in the second quarter and began the quarter on a 10-0 run. Delta extended the run to 13-2 midway through the second and tied the game, 19-19.
Tiffany Amelunke hit two 3-pointers and Shea Smith drained another 3 in the second, as Delta led at half, 26-23.
With her two 3's, Amelunke led Delta at the half with six points. Smith and Kaci Menz each had five points at halftime. Jodi Menz chipped in with four points for Delta by the half.
Ponder led Kelly at intermission with eight points. Weiny ended the half with six points and Mindy Robert led the Lady Hawks with four rebounds.
"Tonight was a good, physical game," said Kelly head coach Rod McQuerter. "We had our chances in the first half to extend the lead but the ball didn't go in. Both teams played extremely hard and it was just a good girls basketball game."
Just as in the second quarter, Delta began the third on a run. The Lady Bobcats began the second half on a 7-0 run and led 33-23 with three minutes to play in the quarter.
Kelly only managed four points in the third quarter and trailed 35-27 heading into the fourth.
"Even though our shots were not falling tonight," said McQuerter, "our girls didn't give up and that is all because of their positive attitude. We have played 23 games this year and the girls always play with a positive attitude. These girls work hard and I can't complain about that."
The Lady Bobcats began the fourth quarter on a 6-2 run and led 41-29 with two minutes to go in the game. Defense was the catalyst for Delta, as they forced Kelly to commit 21 turnovers for the contest. The Lady Hawks only committed three turnovers in the first quarter.
"We played good defense but our offensive execution could of been better tonight," said White. "Early on in the game, we were moving too much from side-to-side, instead of going straight to the basket. We finally started to attack the basket in the second. We were not getting to our assigned areas on offense and we missed a lot of scoring opportunities because we couldn't execute."
All season long, Delta (22-1) has used a balanced scoring attack to take down opponents. The Lady Bobcats kept to the scoring script against Kelly, as five players scored seven points or more in the contest.
Smith led Delta with 11 points. Jodi Menz finished the game with seven points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals. Kaci Menz had seven points, four rebounds, three steals and two assists. Kayla Seabaugh also had seven points for Delta.
Tiffany Amelunke finished with six points, a team-leading six rebounds and four assists. Ashley Deprow chipped in with three points and had four rebounds.
Ponder had a big night for Kelly with a game-high 16 points. Weiny ended the game with six points.
Robert led the Lady Hawks with six rebounds.
Delta outrebounded Kelly 20-18 and led the assists battle 10-9. Delta ended up with seven steals and 18 turnovers, while Kelly had four steals in the game.
It was senior night at Kelly and McQuerter spoke well of this group.
"I am so proud of our seniors," said McQuerter. "All year long, our seniors have been leaders and have led our freshmen and sophomores. They are a excellent group to look up to."
Kelly (15-8) will travel to Portageville on Monday and will take on the Lady Bulldogs, with the junior varsity game set to tip at 6 p.m.