David Reeder

JAY-Following a 4th day of action on Thursday at Bulldog Arena, the final brackets of the 11th Annual Tri-State Basketball Classic were filled.  And a pair of Delaware County teams will take on a pair of good Missouri teams in Saturday evening‘s championship flight..

       Thursday’s opening game featured the 10-1 Kansas Lady Comets versus a strong McDonald County squad.  And following a 12-12 tie at the end of the first frame, Kansas began to exert their dominance. Forcing 11 Lady Mustang turnovers, the Comets got 6 points from Courtney Cowan to go with 10 more from 5 teammates, for a total of 16 in the 2nd.  McDonald County’s Ryan Parsons got all 11 of her team’s tallies in the quarter to give Kansas a 28-23 lead at the break

       Following the intermission, the Lady Comets got a pair of 3-pointers from Monique Sharp, a pair of field goals by Kelsey Barnwell and 5 of Brooke Panther’s team high 13 points.  The Lady ‘Stangs could only answer the Kansas 19 with 10 of their own, falling behind by double digits, 47-33.  With 7 points from Kortni Kendrick and 5 more from Panther, the Lady Comets had their most productive offensive stanza of the game, putting 20 more on the scoreboard. Scoring 13, McDonald County had their best quarter of the night as well.  But their best simply wasn’t enough to cut into the Lady Comet’s 21 point margin.  With the win, Kansas moved to 11-1 and a place in Saturday night’s final.

       In the evening’s 2nd semi-final matchup, the Glenpool Warriors were unable to overcome a 3 point opening quarter. And led by 19 points from game high scorer, Tyler Shaver, the McDonald County Mustangs held off Glenpool 54-48.

       In the subsequent contest, the hometown Jay girls tangled with Neosho.  And the Lady Wildcats jumped on the Lady Bulldogs early. Neosho shot 6 off 11 from the floor and 4 of 4 free throws to put 18 on the scoreboard in the 1st frame.  Lorelei Snow netted 9 of her game high 16 points while a half dozen turnovers limited Jay to just 8.  The Lady ‘Dog’ s Samantha Robertson put in 4 of her team high 13 points.  It was more of the same in the 2nd period, as Talisa Budder got 4 of Jay’s second straight 8 point segment.  In the meantime, with 6 and 5 points, from Shelby Murray and Kalyn Vlasin, respectively, leading the way, the Lady Wildcats put up a 20 point quarter.

       Leading 37-16 to start the 2nd half, Neosho continued to pour it on. Snow put in 7 of the Lady ’Cats 19 3rd quarter points, while Jay’s Robertson and Lauren Wilson, with 4 each scored all the Lady Bulldogs’ 8 point 3rd.  Despite trailing by 32 and only a quarter to play, the Jay girls went on to their best 8 minutes of the game , offensively.  Anchored by a perfect 6 of 6, from the free throw line, by Ashley Shrum, 7 Lady Bulldogs combined for 17 points to make the final score a more respectable 63-42 final score.

       Neosho will take on Kansas in Saturday’s final while the Lady Bulldogs will play McDonald County in the 3rd place contest.

       The resurgent Jay boys took on Westville in the evening’s final bout.  And following a slow start, offensively, the Bulldogs used some pretty good defense and an occasionally ramped up offense, to keep the Yellowjackets in their hip pocket.  After connecting on only 1 of their initial 10 two point tries, the ’Dogs fell behind their guests 16-12 in the opening period.  And in the 2nd, Jay caught fire on both ends of the court.  Limiting their guests to 1 of 7 from the floor and 4 of 7 free throws, the Bulldogs jumped on the Jackets.  Brandon Edge buried 3 treys and a free throw, to go with 4 each from Mitch Goins and Tyler Buzzard to hang 17 on the scoreboard.

       Leading by 15 Jay started the 2nd half the way they had ended the previous one.  With a big effort that included 3 boards and a pair of buckets by Chance Tudor in the middle, eight Bulldogs got together to score 16 more. Westville’s game high scorer, Kyle Langley picked up 7 of his game’s 19 total, but the Jackets fell even further behind.  Westville did their best to chip away at the Bulldog lead by scoring 18 down the stretch.  But Josh Ramsey continued to trump their effort with his soft 10 foot jumper that in addition to 4 more by Tuder held off Westville for their 10 point ticket to Saturday’s final against McDonald County.