By LEE STUBBLEFIELD
The Class 2 District 10 Girls District Basketball Tournament tipped off Saturday, February 28 at Purdy with the Greenfield Lady Wildcats taking down Sarcoxie, 48-31, in the #8 vs #9 play-in game, earning the right to play top-seeded Miller on Monday night. In the first contest of a four-game evening, the Lady Cardinals easily handled Greenfield, 70-46, behind Hannah Wilkerson's 32 points.
College Heights outlasted Jasper in a tense, low-scoring second game, 33-29. The Lady Cougars led 18-17 at half, but Jasper's Rachel Bausinger led a 3rd quarter comeback for a 24-22 lead after three quarters. College Heights converted 5 of 6 free throw attempts in the 4th quarter to earn the win. Rachel Brehm paced CH with a dozen points.
In the #3 vs #6 matchup of the third Monday night game, the Wheaton Lady Bulldogs shocked the higher seed, Joplin McAuley with the first upset of the tournament, 43-25.
Wheaton opened the game with an 11-4 first quarter advantage. Led by Hailey Goostree, Wheaton built an 11-point 2nd quarter lead, before McAuley's Jae Stephens cut it back to 17-9 with her free throws. McAuley finished the first half with a 5-0 run, and trailed 19-13 at the break.
The Lady Bulldogs stretched the lead to 12 points by the end of the 3rd period, thanks to Micah Tichenor and Brooke Forgey who scored two baskets apiece in the quarter. Wheaton senior Leah Jones took over in the 4th, scoring one basket and a quartet of free throws, and the Lady Bulldogs claimed the victory, 43-25.
Haley Goostree led the Wheaton attack with 11 points, and Brooke Forgey added 9. Sonya Kilongkilong scored 9 for McAuley.
After watching Miller destroy Greenfield earlier in the evening, the hometown Lady Eagles must have felt like they had something to prove. Purdy opened against Marionville with a 15-0 blitz in less than two and a half minutes on the strength of Addy Roller's early 9 points, and the Eagles poured on the points in an 87-68 victory.
Purdy rolled up 27 1st quarter points to one basket and two free throws for Marionville. The Lady Eagles hit only 3 of their 8 free throw attempts, missing the chance for a 30-points-plus quarter.
The 2nd quarter saw the lead balloon to 39-6 before Marionville's senior guard, Emily Pantenburg, bombed from the left wing for a trey with 5:30 remaining in the half. Pantenburg went on a scoring tear and finished the half with 14 points, including two more three pointers. But Purdy still led, 51-27, as Roller and Shelby White were unstoppable.
Audrey Patton started the 3rd quarter scoring fest after just 20 seconds to open a 24 point advantage, but Pantenburg answered with her 4th bomb of the night, and the score stood at 53-30. White hit from close range to give Purdy what would be its largest lead of the 2nd half, a 25 point margin.
Pantenburg wowed the crowd with treys on three consecutive possessions, and cut the lead to 20 at 59-39. Purdy's Kelly George called a timeout, as her team looked very unsettled on defense. But while Purdy had been unable to stop Pantenburg, Marionville inexplicably did that for them, playing keepaway from their hottest shooter for the last eight possessions of the 3rd quarter.
The Lady Eagles entered the final frame leading 66-43. Purdy shot 9 of 11 free throws down the stretch, and won despite being outscored in the last eight minutes, 25-21.
Marionville's Pantenburg finished with 36 points, including seven treys. Addy Roller led Purdy with her 31 points, backed by Shelby White with 19, and Brooke Swadley and Audrey Patton with 12 each.
Class 2 District 10 girls action continues on Wednesday, March 4 at Purdy, with Miller playing College Heights at 6 PM, and Purdy clashing with Wheaton at 7:30 PM.