PARK HILLS — The Bismarck Lady Indians, winners of the MAAA Small-School Conference, for the second night in a row were challenged by a conference foe in the MAAA Tournament. This time they fought back for the win and the privilege to play one more game on Saturday against the Fredericktown Lady Cats for fifth-place.
For three quarters, the Valle Lady Warriors were in the lead, but a three by Brooke Taylor to open the fourth followed by a steal put the Lady Indians in the lead for good and Bismarck went on for a 74-67 win.
Taylor scored half of her game’s 30 points in the fourth quarter, but she wasn’t alone in Bismarck’s comeback as Torrie Helms helped out with seven of her 12 points in the fourth frame. Taylor lead all rebounders with 14 for a double-double.
The game began with Valle (12-9) turning the ball over on their first five possessions, but on the other end Bismarck missed five of their first six shots, so that when Hannah Kuenzel scored Valle’s first basket two minutes later, the score was tied at 2-2.
Tied again at 4-4, the Lady Warriors were able to pull down the offensive boards to go up 10-4. Holly Blunt tied the game at 10-10 with a three as the Lady Indians went on a 10-1 run to finish out the quarter.
Leann Marquart found her touch from the floor, scoring eight in the second quarter for Valle, but the Lady Warriors could only chop off one point from Bismarck’s lead by the half as Taylor was 4-4 at the line and Brettnie Henson made a pair of field goals for the Lady Indians.
Megan Ritter hit a three immediately after the break to draw the Lady Warriors to within one at 31-30, and two free throws by Hannah Kuenzel gave Valle their first lead since the first quarter. Valle’s defense held the Lady Indians scoreless for five minutes of the quarter while going on an 11-0 run to make it 38-31.
Bismarck (16-3) scored the next five and Taylor took an inbound pass under their basket in the last minute to tie the score at 43-43, but a three by Marquart gave the Lady Warriors the lead going into the fourth quarter.
Valle had four player to score in double figures with Kuenzel leading the way with 19, Marquart had 15, Ritter scored 13, and Kelly Hermann finished with 10 to go along with 13 rebounds.
They did not keep it long as Taylor opened the fourth with her three. After Taylor’s five points to start the quarter, Helms made a steal and drove all the way for two, drawing the foul for one more point and giving Bismarck a little breathing room.
They would need it as Marquart hit another three to make it a 51-50 game, but the Lady Indians continued to score before the Lady Warriors could score again to stay in the lead, and as time disappeared Valle had to foul only helping the Lady Indians to gain a greater lead, scoring 31 points in the quarter.
Bismarck 16 15 12 31 – 74
Valle 11 16 19 21 – 67
Bismarck – 30, Helms 12, Blunt 10, Fenwick 8, B. Henson 6, Wade 5, Henson 3. 3-pt. FG – Blunt, Taylor.
Valle -Kuenzel 19, Marquart 15, Ritter 13, Hermann 10, Abt 8, Dalton 2. 3-pt. FG – Marquart 3, Ritter 2.
Fredericktown 61, Central 44
The Central Lady Rebels had no answer for Fredericktown’s Kylie Oertel who scored 34 points to give the Lady Cats a 61-44 win and another day to play in the tournament.
The Lady Rebels kept the game close for a half, but Oertel scored 15 points in the third quarter to help put the game out of reach. Oertel also had 12 rebounds in the game and two blocked shots.
Central (7-15) scored only six points in each of the first and third quarters, broke loose for 17 in the fourth quarter, but it was too little, too late. Riley Owens hit on two threes to lead Central with 12 points, and Stacy Williams scored nine of her 10 points in the fourth quarter.
Fredericktown (12-10) gained a 13 point lead in the second quarter, but Owens’ first three and a conventional three by Melanee Cunningham helped cut the deficit to six at the half.
Baskets by Owens and Maggee Cunningham to start the third quarter cut the lead to two, before Oertel took over the game.
Fredericktown 12 15 17 17 – 61
Central 6 15 6 17 – 44
Fredericktown – Oertel 34, McDowell 9, Korokis 5, Stevens 4, Denman 4, Moser 3, Henderson 2. 3-pt. FG McDowell, Korokis.
Central – Owens 12, S. Williams 10, Me. Cunningham 8, A. Williams 6, St. Gemme 4, Ma. Cunningham 4. 3-pt FG – Owens 2.