Heber Springs forward Makenzie Martin scored a game-high 18 points and guard Hannah Johnson added 17, lifting the Lady Panthers over 5A Batesville 54-46 last Friday at the Panther Den.
"It was a typical game coming off two tough conference road games," said Lady Panther Coach Jamey Riddle. "We had to create a lot of energy and it took us a little bit to get going. Hannah had some big shots for us and Martin got going there a little bit. What makes a good team is being able to fight through the emotional roller coaster of a season and bounce back after some tough games."
The Lady Pioneers led 18-13 after the first quarter, but Heber took control in the second, closing the period with an 8-0 run sparked by Hannah Johnson, who hit a driving bank shot.
Guard Skylar Johnson pulled down an offensive rebound and scored then Martin sank a jumper from the foul line and notched a putback, giving the Lady Panthers a 30-25 lead at half.
Heber pushed its lead to 40-27 midway through the third quarter on back-to-back three-point plays by Hannah Johnson and the Lady Panthers maintained their double figure lead heading into the final eight minutes of play.
Down 44-34, Batesville chipped away in the fourth quarter, pulling within five with just over a minute remaining when guard Sydney Staggs ripped a three-pointer from right wing.
Martin, who hit 6 of 6 free throws in the final period including two after an offensive rebound late in the contest, helped Heber keep Batesville at bay.
Guard Haley Hambrick led Batesville (0-8) with 14 points, guard Kenzi Dunegan added 10 and Staggs had eight.
Following Martin and Hannah Johnson's combined 35 points, Skylar Johnson chipped in 10 for the Lady Panthers (7-3) and forward Mary Lawrence added six.