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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Lady Eagles beat Wonderview, Nemo Vista for state berth

  • After making an early exit from last week’s district tournament, the West Side Lady Eagles had something to prove as the No. 3 seed from the 1A-2 South. None of the other 1A-2 South Conference teams won in the first round of the Region 4 Tournament, but West Side stepped up its game and beat 1A-5 West secon...
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  • After making an early exit from last week’s district tournament, the West Side Lady Eagles had something to prove as the No. 3 seed from the 1A-2 South.
    None of the other 1A-2 South Conference teams won in the first round of the Region 4 Tournament, but West Side stepped up its game and beat 1A-5 West second-seeded Wonderview 60-52 on Thursday night and then defeated Nemo Vista 65-60 in overtime of Friday, claiming a spot in this week’s state tournament at Hillcrest High School in Lynn.
    West Side fell to Scranton 46-41 in Saturday’s championship game, meaning the second-seeded Lady Eagles will face Jasper, the second seed out of Region 1, on Thursday at 1 p.m.
    Last Thursday against Wonderview’s Lady Daredevils, West Side jumped out to a 35-30 lead at halftime but only carried a one-point advantage heading to the fourth quarter. Kayla Brock, who led the team with 16 points, made 4-of-5 free throws in the final period while Haley Delk, who finished with nine points, hit 3-of-3 foul shots down the stretch, heping the Lady Eagles pull out a 60-52 victory. Laney Lucas followed Brock with 14 points and Rilee Elliott added 11.
    Also, Haley Turney finished with six points, including 3-of-3 free throws in the fourth quarter. Caitlin Stewart also chipped in with four points. Lindsey Burgener led Wonderview with 16 points and Lauren Biggler added 10.
    On Friday, the Lady Eagles overcame a 14-4 first quarter deficit against Nemo Vista. The Lady Red Hawks took a 10-0 lead to begin the game as Megan Murray ripped a 3-pointer up top then Jade Mallett, Lauren Baugh and Megan Strickland combined for 5-of-6 free throws before Monica Murray scored in transition.
    West Side broke through when Brock split the Lady Hawks’ defense for a bucket from right block but Monica Murray fired back with a 19-foot jumper from left wing. Monica Murray added a midrange jumper from left baseline following a steal by Megan Murray before Brock answered from right block, pulling the Lady Eagles within 10 going into the second quarter.
    Strickland opened the second with a turnaround jumper in the paint before Turney drilled a 3-pointer up top and Brock turned a steal into a pair of free throws. Megan Murray responded with two from the line before Elliott bounced to Turney for a layup on a fast break but Strickland answered inside.
    Trailing 20-11, West Side used a 6-0 run to pull within three as Elliott sliced down right baseline for a layup then Elliott scored again on a snow bird before Brock found Lucas speeding ahead of the pack for a layup.
    After Baugh made a jump shot from right elbow, Lucas grabbed an offensive rebound and hit a bank shot from right side but Megan Murray drove right baseline and dished to Baugh for a basket.
    Page 2 of 3 - Jordana Andrews followed her own miss for two as Nemo extended its lead to 26-19 before Lucas turned an offensive rebound into a free throw. Strickland responded with a short jumper off an assist from Megan Murray but Lucas converted a steal into a free throw then Turney drove the right side for a layup in the closing seconds of the period, leaving West Side with a 28-23 deficit at halftime.
    Monica Murray buried a 3-pointer from right wing to start the third quarter but the Lady Eagles hung tough as Brock swiped a steal and drove coast-to-coast for a basket, plus the foul. Brock completed the 3-point play but Mallet hit a bank from right block before Brock scored again, this time off an assist from Turney.
    Lucas followed with a 3-pointer from left wing off an assist from Elliott as the Lady Eagles pulled within a bucket but Tiffany McCoy came off the bench and hit a midrange jumper from right baseline.
    Stewart kept West Side close with a putback but Megan Murray found Baugh wide open on left block for two before Brock bounced to Stewart for a basket. McCoy retaliated with a 3-pointer from right wing as Nemo’s lead grew to five but Brock hit two from the line, then Lucas swiped a steal and hit Elliott for a breakaway layup.
    Monica Murray answered with a pull up jumper from left side, pushing the Lady Hawks’ lead to 42-39 entering the final eight minutes of regulation.
    West Side used a 5-0 spurt to snatch the lead early in the fourth quarter as Lucas drilled a 3-pointer up top then Stewart and Brock each turned offensive rebounds into free throws but Andrews countered with a 3-pointer from left corner.
    Trailing 45-44, West Side reclaimed the lead with another 5-0 run as Lucas sliced through the middle of the lane for a layup and Brock grabbed a defensive rebound and drove the length of the floor for two more then Stewart turned an offensive rebound into a free throw.
    With under 2:30 remaining, Andrews came up with a steal and hit a 3-pointer from right wing off an assist from Megan Murray before Brock hauled in a defensive rebound and hit Lucas ahead of the pack for two, giving West Side a 51-48 lead.
    Nemo kept battling as Strickland used a spin move in the lane for a basket before Turney made a free throw with 25 seconds remaining, giving the Lady Eagles a 52-50 lead. But Megan Murray drew a foul after grabbing an offensive rebound and she made both foul shots with 1.9 seconds left to play, sending the game into a four-minute overtime.
    Baugh hit two from the stripe as Nemo took an early lead in the extra period but Brock made an amazing shot over three defenders while falling down. Andrews responded with a pull up jumper in transition before Turney hit a free throw and Brock hit two more following a huge steal with 1:00 remaining.
    Page 3 of 3 - Brock’s two free throws with 54.6 seconds left gave the Lady Eagles a 57-56 lead then West Side survived two missed foul shots before Turney canned two from the line and Elliott added another following a big defensive stop.
    Nemo stayed alive as Andrews drove the right side and hit an off-balance shot but Elliott and Turney each made a pair of clutch foul shots before Andrews scored again but it was too late as Elliott made two more from the line, setting the final at 65-60.
    Andrews led Nemo Vista with 14 points, Monica Murray followed with 11, while Baugh and Strickland each scored 10. Brock scored a game high 20 points for West Side, Lucas added 16, Turney had 13 and Elliott chipped in 11.
     

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