Kayla Mitchell, who had a game-high 23 points, kept her team in the game with nine second-quarter points, but the Lady Eagles trailed 26-19 at the half. Mitchell said the Lady Eagles still had a chip on their collective shoulder from a 15-point loss to Silo earlier in the season.
“We really wanted a rematch and pretty-much wanted to prove we were better than we were,” said Mitchell. As for trailing at the half, “We all just had to keep out confidence up and try to stay calm.”
Achille opened the third quarter on 7-1 run before three unanswered from Silo. With four minutes left in the quarter J.B. Bell found Marissa Williams underneath to spark an 11-0 run for Achille that gave them a 37-30 lead entering the fourth quarter.
It was the first lead for the Lady Eagles since early in the first quarter.
Achille led by as much as 10 points with three minutes left in the period, and Silo used that time send the Lady Eagles to the foul line. The strategy was working, helping them cut the lead back to five but starter Kenslie Stanley and sixth-man Kara Felton fouled out in the process.
On three straight trips inside of two minutes Achille extended the lead back to nine and maintained around a nine-point advantage within the final minute. Rachel Grider cut the lead to 53-47 with a 3-pointer, and Achille came up empty in its next two trips to the line. Silo was able to score on ensuing possessions, but couldn’t do it quickly enough.
Brittany Townsend scored a team-high 15 points for Silo, while Stanley notched a double-double with 10 points and 11 rebounds. Jordan Bacon added nine points with seven by Felton and five each from Torrie Wright and Grider.
Mitchell also recorded a double-double with 10 rebounds, while Katelyn Irvin and Katlyn Alexander reached double digits with 12 and 11 points, respectively. Williams and Bell rounded out the scoring with five and two points, respectively.
The Colbert Lady Leopards improved to 12-6 on the season, and had Monday’s opener in control from the start. Mercedes Jones sparked a 12-0 opening run, and put together six unanswered after the run was snapped by Bennington’s Maryssa Mays.
The Lady Leopards led 18-2 after the first quarter, and Bennington never threatened. The Lady Bears put together back-to-back buckets by Hope Thornton and Hollee Hill early in the second quarter, but it was outscored 19-4 the rest of the half.
The Lady Bears added two points in each of the last two periods, while Colbert was able to rest starters. A lot of players got involved in Colbert’s scoring led by Hayley Wilson with 11 points off the bench. Colbert’s Ginavee Mowles was the only other player for either team in double figures with 10 points.
Bennington was led by Mays with 6, while Hill added four. Thornton and Harley Minyard scored two each for the Lady Bears.
Mercedes Jones led the Colbert starters with eight points. Padyn Knickle, Taylor Reeve, Tara Andrews, Morgan Wright and Taylor Lyons each scored four. Miranda Reid, Jenna Bowles, Katherine Hair, Nancy Olguin, Jacee Bennett, Logan Carbaugh and Darian Bradford scored two each for Colbert who was 30-of-57 from the field.
Bennington will face Silo in Thursday’s 5 p.m. consolation game, while Colbert goes on to play Achille in the championship semifinals at 5 p.m. Friday.