(Photo by Brent Shipman, Staff)
BROSELEY -- Already holding a 13-point lead against Twin Rivers going into halftime Wednesday night at the Lady Royals Holiday Classic, the Sikeston Lady Bulldogs used a hot start to the third quarter to distance themselves from the Lady Royals before winning 61-31.
"I thought our tenacity was really good," Sikeston head coach Matt Schonhoff said. "There was a couple of situations, but all in all, we competed extremely hard against a good, well coached Twin Rivers team."
Opening up to a dominate first quarter that left them up 14-2 entering the second frame, the Lady Bulldogs saw Twin Rivers offense awake from its slumber to and within one point of Sikeston in the frame to leave the Lady Royals trailing 30-17 at the half.
Picking up were they left off in the first quarter, however, the Lady Bulldogs opened up the second allowing Twin Rivers to hit a quick open layup before taking over and going on a 17-0 run in the next seven minutes with Asia Liggins' eight points in the frame leading the charge.
"We challenged them at halftime," Schonhoff said. "Twin Rivers put their second team in (in the second quarter) and they had more power than what we did. They got back in to the game and we told (our girls), 'the first two or three minutes of the third quarter is going to be the tell of the ball game. We need to come out mentally focused and ready to go,' and we did that."
Though the Lady Royals did rally with six points in the final 46 seconds of the quarter, Sikeston scored six consecutive points to open the third to keep a comfortable 28-point going into the final six minutes of the game.
After having a short bench the last few weeks due to concussions suffered by Darqueshionna Howard and Aleah Little, was glad to see both girls able to step back in the lineup Wednesday night and contribute.
"We had our full team today," he said. "We're 100 percent now and it really showed with our substitutions and we stayed fresh. We got in some foul trouble so we were able to use our bench to our ability."
Now at 5-3, the Lady Bulldogs will take on New Madrid County Central today at 4:30 p.m. for fifth place in the Holiday Classic.
TWIN RIVERS (31) -- Chelsea Crain 2, Tori Cole 4, Sydni Hester 2, Mallory Guess 2, Kelsey Snider 6, Alexa Stockton 4, Mallory Douglas 1, Hannah Sadler 8, Alix Jones 2. FG 10, FT 11-15, F 15. (3-pointers: none. Fouled out: none).
SIKESTON (61) -- Tyangela Gibson 12, Keyonna Blissett 7, Darqueshionna Howard 4, Vonteria Applewhite 4, Asia Liggins 15, AnnQuaneisha Dennis 6, Taneshia Pulley 8, Aleah Little 5. FG 25, FT 11-21, F 17. (3-pointers: none. Fouled out: none).
BROSELEY -- Unable to overcome a rough start, the Dexter Lady Bearcats fell to the Kennett Lady Indians 53-37 in the championship bracket semifinals.
"I thought tonight that Kennett definitely put a clinic on," Dexter head coach Chad Allen said. "Their coach does a great job with them. It was like they took advantage of our youth.
"Seems like we were a step too slow to loose balls and they definitely hurt us on the boards. I think it was like 33-18 (in rebounds)."
Already down 14-7 after the first, the Lady Bearcats saw Kennett continue to add to their lead in the second, going on an 8-2 run to end the half with Janeashia Gooden and Caroline Shetley scoring back-to-back baskets to cap the drive and put their team up 30-17.
Though Dexter's offense was able too keep up with the Lady Indians in the second half, it could little more than dent the 13-point deficit the Lady Bearcats faced entering the third quarter.
Keeping at least an 11-point advantage the final two frames, Kennett ended the game converting 7-of-9 free throws in outscoring Dexter 13-10 in the fourth to help seal the win.
"They bring five in and five out," Allen said of the Lady Indian's substitution system. "They try to make conditioning a factor and I think that definitely bothered us.
"I think we're going to have to get in a little better shape, especially over Christmas break try to push it a little more."
Dexter will now face Naylor for third-place in the Holiday Classic this afternoon at 6 p.m.
DEXTER (37) -- Mollie Whitehead 2, Katelyn Frazier 10, Hannah Noe 6, Erika Cobb 3, Brittany Harris 11, Paige Patterson 5. FG 14, FT 9-15, F 13. (3-pointers: none. Fouled out: none).
KENNETT (53) -- Alexandra Brown 7, Alex Washburn 3, Jerrica Wheeler 9, Audrey Wynne 10, Darby Sparks 1, Veronica Amos 19, Caroline Shetley 2, Janeashia Gooden 2. FG 19, 12-17, F 15. (3-pointers: Washburn 1, Amos 2. Fouled out: none).
BROSELEY -- Trailing Senath by one point at the half, the New Madrid County Central Lady Eagles used a huge second half to propel themselves to a 72-61 win.
"The intensity wasn't there defensively early on like I want it to be," NMCC head coach David Crockett said. "But we got some things going offensively and that kind of helped us on the defensive end. In the end we came out with a 'W' and that's what we came here for."
Scoring 21 of her game-high 36 points in the final two quarters, Benesha Childress helped jump start the Lady Eagles offense as it burst out in the third frame, outscoring Senath 23-14 to take the lead once and for all.
Though Senath put up 19 points in the fourth in a comeback bid, NMCC added another 22 to their tally to keep the game in check.
Now at 5-3 on the year, the Leady Eagles will face Sikeston today at 4:30 p.m. for fifth place in the Holiday Classic.
NMCC (72) -- Ebonni Adway 2, Brittany Johnson 6, Dallas Campbell 4, Benesha Childress 36, Te'Aundra Southern 2, Karen McGloson 7, Hays 1, A. Johnson 6, Williams 8. FG 27, FT 13-28, F 20. (3-pointers: Johnson 1, Childress 4. Fouled out: McGloson, Williams).
SENATH (61) -- Reagan Miller 4, Mallory Fritz 6, Jami Jackson 13, Shelby Sullivan 1, Natalie Bibbs 2, Seleena Neal 35. FG 22, FT 17-25, F 22. (3-pointers: none. Fouled out: Jackson, Bibbs).