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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Heber Sr. Girls romp Midland

  • Heber Springs senior twin sisters Skylar Johnson and Hannah Johnson combined for 30 points, leading the Lady Panthers past Midland 62-33 on Friday night at the Panther Den.
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  • Heber Springs senior twin sisters Skylar Johnson and Hannah Johnson combined for 30 points, leading the Lady Panthers past Midland 62-33 on Friday night at the Panther Den.
    "It was a little slow at first," said Riddle. "Of course it was an emotional game Tuesday with Cave City so you had to expect that a little bit. We did the main things correctly," said Heber Coach Jamey Riddle.
    "Hannah had several shots and made several of them, Skylar hit a lot of shots and I think we had some people come off the bench that gave us a lot of energy in the second half to pick up the momentum. We weren't quite as stagnant in the second half."
    Hannah Johnson led the charge with 19 points and Skylar followed with 11.
    Hannah Johnson sparked the Lady Panthers with eight points in the first quarter, sinking two three-pointers as Heber opened up an 18-12 lead while the Lady Mustangs hung around primarily due to post player Jessica Hertz, who worked hard in the paint to score four baskets in the opening eight minutes.
    Down by three, Heber closed out the first quarter by outscoring Midland 15-6, starting when Hannah Johnson buried a three-pointer from right corner in transition.
    Guard McKenzie Cresswell added a 17-foot jumper from right baseline then Hannah Johnson swiped a steal and scored, giving the Lady Panthers a 12-8 lead.
    Hertz grabbed a loose ball and scored inside, but Heber bounced back with four straight as Mary Simmons hit a jumper inside the foul line and Skylar Johnson picked a steal, cruising to the basket for a layup.
    Hertz scored again, this time in transition, cutting the Lady Panthers' lead to four until forward Mary Lawrence caught a pass at the foul line, sidestepped a defender and buried a jumper at the buzzer, giving Heber an 18-12 lead after one quarter of play.
    Heber outscored the Lady Mustangs 14-7 in the second quarter behind five points from Hannah Johnson and six from guard Madeline Spanel, who opened the period with a pull up jumper from right elbow.
    Spanel answered a Hertz basket with a midrange jumper from left baseline but Hertz would score again, giving Midland's post player 12 points in the first 12 minutes of play.
    Against a tough post player such as Hertz, the Lady Panthers could use senior forward Janae Long, who started much of the last two seasons before sustaining an ACL injury two weeks prior to the season.
    "No doubt [we miss] Janae with just the athletic ability. Mary Lawrence does a great job down there and we have just kind of moved her around for us position wise. It was going to be hard to push her around but she used her God given ability to move her a little bit and keep it out of her hands more than anything."
    Page 2 of 2 - Hannah Johnson answered Hertz with a three-pointer, Skylar Johnson picked a steal and hit Hannah Johnson for a layup and Skylar Johnson nailed a three-pointer from right corner off an assist from guard Erin Rezanka as the Lady Panthers' pushed their lead to 32-19 at halftime.
    Heber erased any doubts early in the third quarter, which the Lady Panthers opened with six straight on buckets by Lawrence, Hannah Johnson and Skylar Johnson, who hit a bank shot over two defenders.
    Simmons and forward Makenzie Martin both made two baskets in the third quarter, including on a pair of jumpers up top ¬ one from 16 feet out and another from 19 out.
    Leading 50-29, Heber scored 14 more points to close out the game, while holding Midland to only four.
    Hannah Johnson scored four in the period, including a runner in the lane during the opening minute. Martin, Hannah Johnson, Rezanka, forward Alison Thomas and Spanel then strung together five straight buckets for Heber and Thomas again in the final minute, setting the final at 62-33.
    Hertz led Midland (1-1) with 14 points and forward Paisley Pratt had seven.
    Following Hannah Johnson (19) and Skylar Johnson (11), Martin scored eight and Simmons finished with six for Heber (1-1).

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