PARK HILLS – Mineral Area sophomore Ella Gobald erupted for 10 of her game-high 13 points during the second half, and teammate Holly Forbes scored 10 of her 11 points before the break against John Wood on Friday.

Gobald paced all players with three made shots from behind the arc on three attempts, while Forbes led with eight rebounds and four steals in a 64-53 victory over the Lady Blazers.

Mineral Area (4-0) will test its unbeaten record against John A. Logan at home on Saturday.

The Lady Cardinals began the contest on a 7-0 run over the first three minutes, before Chelsea Wood sank a mid-range jump shot. Wood finished with eight of her 10 points in the second half for John Wood (0-4).

Forbes positioned herself well in the post to receive easy entry passes from Mineral Area guards to produce eight points in the opening period.

The Lady Cardinals suffered an increase in turnovers nearing the end of the first quarter. Madison McCabe drilled the first long-range shot of the game in transition to give the Lady Blazers their first lead of 13-12 with three seconds on the clock.

John Wood continued on an 8-0 spurt until Allie Golden split a pair of free throws with 7:50 to play in the second to bring Mineral Area within 16-13.

Briar Johnson converted her first attempt with a jump shot on the next trip to further shrink the MAC deficit.

Golden finished with nine points and four rebounds while Johnson tallied six points.

Gobald baked in her first attempt from behind the arc to tie the score 22-22 with 3:23 on the clock, and a Johnson 3-pointer gave Mineral Area a 25-23 advantage just one minute later.

Forbes secured an offensive rebound 10 seconds before halftime, and scored a putback for a 28-24 edge at the break.

Wood slashed into the paint for three open layups during the first two minutes of the third quarter, but Gobald and Mary Katherine Tucker offset the scoring with a pair of 3-pointers.

Each side committed six turnovers during a more careless third period, and each ended with 17.

Lainey Bell hit her first shot from long distance with 12 seconds remaining in the third, and Madison Reynolds blocked a deep attempt by McCabe at the buzzer to enter the final quarter ahead 47-38. Bell recorded four of her seven rebounds in the third, and finished with a pair of 3-pointers.

Tyeshia Mitchell began the fourth with an offensive follow in the opening seconds, and gave Mineral Area a 54-43 lead two minutes later by picking off a pass near midcourt for an open layup in transition.

Autumn Voigt and Madelyn Hyer remained physical down low to keep John Wood close down the stretch. Voigt recorded a team-high 13 points plus five rebounds, and Hyer posted 10 points.

The Lady Blazers got with 56-51 with 3:45 to play, but failed to complete the comeback try. Golden drilled a 15-foot jumper off an assist by Mitchell with 35 seconds remaining to seal the win.

Reynolds finished with nine assists for the Lady Cardinals. Makenzy Smith added 10 points with six rebounds.

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Sports Reporter

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