The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


March 5, 2014

Carl Junction, Nevada win openers in girls division of Class 4 tourney

CARL JUNCTION, Mo. — Fourth-seeded Carl Junction held off a Carthage comeback in the third quarter and defeated the Tigers 50-38 Tuesday in the opening girls game of the weather-delayed Class 4 District 12 basketball tournament in the Bulldogs’ gymnasium.

In the next game, No. 3 Nevada rode a 19-0 first-quarter outburst to a 53-23 decision over Monett.

The Bulldogs (15-11) led 21-14 after scoring the first basket of the second half, but a three-point play by Carthage’s Larissa Pyle-Moore cut the margin to four points.

Carl Junction then turned the ball over, but the Bulldogs’ Bryce Boyd stole the inbounds pass and flipped the ball to Lindsey Showalter for a basket.

Taylor Stanley’s layup off a pass from Maya Williams made it a four-point game again, but a 3-pointer from the right wing by Showalter and a buckets by Boyd and Brenlee McPherson helped the Bulldogs build a 31-23 lead entering the fourth quarter.

“Bryce Boyd got a big steal for us and gave it back to Lindsey for a bucket,” Bulldogs coach Tiffany Dirks said. “Brenlee got a big bucket for us. That (stretch) was the turning point of the game for us. Yes, they got within four points of us, but I was proud of our girls for keeping their composure and maintaining the lead the whole game.”

Showalter, 5-foot-11 sophomore, scored 12 second-half points and finished with 17 to lead the Bulldogs. Boyd and McPherson contributed 11 and 10 points, respectively.

Williams scored Carthage’s first seven points and wound up with 15, and Pyle-Moore scored 10 for the Tigers (7-19).

“I thought it was a good win for us to start off in the tournament.” Dirks said. “I think there were a lot of errors that we made mentally, probably because it was the first round of district and we were nervous. But I think overall it was a solid win. It gave a lot of our kids some chances to see some good chemistry.”

Brooke McLean and Kelsey Wiseman hit field goals to give Monett a 4-0 lead over Nevada, but the Cubs didn’t score again until late in the quarter.

In between, the Tigers ran off 19 unaswered points, headlined by a field goal, two free throws and two 3-pointers from junior guard Morgan McNeley and two treys and another field goal from Mikayla Bartlett, another junior guard. .

“I thought our team played really, really well and as a team,” Tigers coach Brent Bartlett said. “Once we got into our press, things started happening more. We knocked down some shots, and that relaxed the team. We’re playing well and hopefully peaking at the right time.

“Our defense really set the tempo. After we gave up four points, I thought the defense beared down a little bit and did a good job rebounding.”

The Tigers (10-13) made seven treys during the first three quarters, including four by Bartlett.

“In the last few ball games, I’ve seen that coming around,” Coach Bartlett said. “That opens up our inside game. We shot well, played well.”

Bartlett and McNeley provided a 1-2 scoring punch with 20 and 17, respectively.

Faith Schmidt led Monett (5-19) with 11 points, nine in the second half.

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