David Reeder

After five games and seven hours the 1st round of the 11th Annual Tri-State Basketball Tournament came to a conclusion Tuesday night at Bulldog Arena. 

In the day’s opening game, the host Bulldog boys took on the Locust Grove J. V. And despite missing a half dozen layups and turning the ball over seven times, Jay jumped to an early 18-12 lead. 

Jeremiah Daugherty buried a pair of treys to go with Brandon Edge’s three deuces for the bulk of the ‘Dog’s first period tallies and the six point lead.

In the subsequent frame, Jay’s Cedrick Grass scored 12 of his game high 20, while Chance Tuder hauled in five of his game’s 11 rebounds.

Leading by 13, the Bulldogs shot seven of 13 from the field to score 18 more in the third, extending their lead to 16. 

The two teams battled to an 11-11 tie in the 4th quarter, to give Jay the 66-50 victory.

In the day’s second game the 4th ranked Kansas Lady Comets played the Jay J.V. squad. And as one might expect, the result was all Kansas.

While dominating the boards 15-7 in the first half, the Comet offense put 38 on the scoreboard and held their hosts to 17.

The bulk of the first half offensive damage was done by Kortni Kendrick with 11 points and 10 by Kelsey Barnwell. 

After a brief appearance and a 21 point lead in the third, the Comet starters gave way to their bench.  While scoring 24 more in the third, the Kansas defense held Jay to only a Jessica Greer trey and a Carrie Kirby deuce and a huge 40 point lead. 

The remainder of the game was contested by the teams’ respective benches which led to the 81-37 final score.

In further first round action, the Grove J.V. squad tangled with the Mustangs of Missouri’s McDonald County. 

And in the first chapter the Mustang offense dialed up long distance. McDonald County senior Tyler Shaver threw in four of his team’s five three point shots for a dozen of his game high 16 points. 

And the Ridgerunner offense was as cold as their opponents were hot.  Shooting two of 16 from the floor and one of four free throws, Grove found themselves in a 17 point hole.

Things continued to go south in the second quarter for Grove. While the Mustangs connected on seven of their first nine field goal tries, the Ridgerunners got three each from Adam Steffenson and Buck Maples, to go with two by Chase Hilton for only eight.

Trailing 40-13 to start the second half, the ’Runners held the high octane Mustang offense to 10 points.  But Grove could only scrape together seven of their own to fall behind by 30. 

The Ridgerunners won the 4th quarter 12-11 resulting in the 61-32 final.

In the fourth game of the night, the Lady Yellowjackets of Westville stayed close to a very good McDonald County team for the better part of three quarters.  But a very solid Lady Mustang squad led by 24 points from their 6-1 senior, Jaimee Shields, extended their lead down the stretch, to close out the contest with a convincing 46-36 win.

The Kansas and Westville boys were pitted against each other in the evening’s fifth and final game.  And in the first frame the Comets dominated the boards defensively, but; turned the ball over six times on offense. 

The Yellowjackets were able to turn three of the Kansas miscues into buckets to take an early 6-0 lead and extended it to 9-3 at the end of the quarter. 

With four apiece by Ethan Fausett, Trenton Cochran and Colton Evans the Comets were able to tie things up at nine and to eventually take a 15-13 lead. 

But a pair of Cody Young field goals, late in the half, gave Westville a 24-19 lead at the midway point.

The Jackets shot four of 14, for only 10 points in the third.  But the Comets committed nine more turnovers and were unable to make any kind of significant dip into the Westville margin. 

In the fourth the Yellowjackets were able to put things in their hip pocket by shooting five of 10 from the floor and seven of 12 from the stripe to score 17.  The Comets managed to pull within four, but Westville never let them any closer to ultimately pull off the victory, 51-36.