Pine Bluff Dollarway had its way with Heber Springs last Thursday night in the 2-4A District Tournament semifinals.
The Class 4A No. 2 ranked Cardinals, who beat Lonoke Saturday night for the district crown, dismantled the Panthers (15-10) in all aspects of the game while running away with a 51-22 victory, leaving Heber as the third seed entering this week's 4A East Regional Tournament.
Heber is set to play second-seeded Brookland in the first round, an elimination game, tonight at 5:30 p.m. at the Panther Den.
Dollarway (24-2) led the entire game, jumping out to a quick 6-0 lead on consecutive three-pointers from guard Kabion Ento, who scored eight points in the first period alone, including a steal that he turned into a one-handed slam.
Forward Devonne Chapman added six more points for Dollarway in the first quarter, while Heber stayed within striking distance behind guard Judson Smith, who drilled a three-pointer and completed an old-fashioned three-point play.
Chapman swiped a steal and finished with a gliding finger roll early in the second quarter then both teams hit a severe drought until Heber guard Austin “Red” Adkins drove into the lane and dropped a leaner with 1:45 left to play in the first half.
Both teams then picked up the pace as Ento countered with a three-pointer from left wing before forward Mason Schroeder answered in transition for the Panthers.
With Heber trailing 19-12, the Cardinals closed the first half with a 5-2 flurry, starting when guard Joshua Liddell drove past his defender and down the middle of the lane for a layup. After Heber forward Austin
Brown hit a pair of free throws, Dollarway guard DeAaron Adway nailed a three-pointer from right corner in the closing seconds, giving the Cardinals a 24-14 lead at halftime
Dollarway, which held Heber to eight points in the second half, busted the game wide open in the third quarter, outscoring the Panthers 14-4 behind six points from Chapman and four from forward Nicholas Dickson.
Schroeder recorded two field goals for Heber in the third quarter and Smith netted the Panthers only field goal of the fourth quarter, ripping a three-pointer up top.
The Panthers trailed 38-22 after Adkins hit a free throw with 6:38 remaining but Dollarway closed the game on a 13-0 run, including five points from Chapman, who used his leaping ability to create havoc around the basket.
Chapman paced Dollarway with a game-high 19 points and Ento followed with 13. Smith led Heber with nine points and Schroeder finished with six.