The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


December 31, 2013

Bulldogs win 3 straight in Pink and White tourney

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Carl Junction made it three wins in a row on Tuesday in the Pink Division of the annual Pink and White Lady Classic to claim consolation.

The Bulldogs nipped Branson 47-44 in Weiser Gym at Drury University. Their success came after an opening setback to No. 1 seed Nixa.

Nixa, like Branson out of the Central Ozark Conference Large Division, lost 56-40 to third-seeded St. Louis Miller Career Academy in the championship contest.

In other Pink Division games, Crane defeated Marshfield 67-61 for third and Kickapoo beat Louisville duPont Manual 47-39 for fifth. Fort Smith Northside, in the White Division final, defeated favored Ozark 62-53.

Lindsey Showalter, 5-foot-11 sophomore who hit two treys, scored 13 points for Carl Junction. Garnering 10 apiece were 5-5 senior Bryce Boyd and 6-1 classmate Katie Skaggs.

Class 4 Carl Junction, which improved to 6-5, outscored Class 5 Branson 21-16 in the second half to prevail and come away with a silver cup.

“We basically matched them point-for-point and it was back-and-forth the entire game,” Carl Junction coach Tiffany Dirks said. “I thought both teams played very well — I was very happy we committed just 11 turnovers — and we didn’t get rattled when we faced a four-point deficit at one point in the game. We were patient and played as a team.

“Our statistics had the rebounds 18 apiece and I thought we had a phenomenal defensive effort as a team,” Dirks said. “We had Katie (Skaggs) with seven blocked shots. She was spectacular on defense and solid on offense.

“Sam Kopp (a 5-7 junior guard) was another who performed well on defense.”.

Amanda Kearney, a 5-9 freshman, had four 3s in scoring 18 for Kip Bough’s Pirates. Ashley Forrest, a 5-8 sophomore, had 10 points.

“This tournament was good for us,” Dirks said. “We went out in two games last year. Hopefully, we can build on it and keep moving forward.”

Carl Junction ironically will visit Branson on Jan. 8 for a 5 p.m. tripleheader to make up a Dec. 13 postponement. The Bulldogs resume their schedule by entertaining Joplin at 6 p.m. on Monday.

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