ALMA – The Mountainburg Lady Dragons remained undefeated in the Charles B. Dyer Crawford County Classic since the revival of the historic tournament last year with a 56-43 win against host Alma on Thursday.
"That’s big for the people of Mountainburg," Mountainburg head coach Dan Garringer said. "I’m a move-in, but the people around here remember the hey-day of the Crawford County Tournament. No farther than we are from Alma, our people like for us to play well against them. It’s a rivalry for us."
The trio of Tara Webb, Kaylyn Moore and Auburn Peters combined for 55 points and 23 rebounds in leading the Lady Dragons, the defending tournament champions.
Mountainburg jumped out to a 15-7 lead after a quarter and led 17-9 before committing eight turnovers in the second quarter and wilting under Alma’s pressure.
"They made some steals and had some clean looks," Garringer said. "They’re aggressive. They play up and down the floor. They really do. The way they’re trapping you, you have to swing around behind the double team."
The Airedalettes went on a 12-0 run with Lania Wright scoring three baskets and adding two free throws during the run while Cassie Cochran hit a 3-pointer from the corner.
Free throws by Moore, Webb and Colette Ross forged a 21-21 halftime tie.
The game was still tied late in the third quarter before Moore drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer. Mountainburg reeled off the first seven points of the fourth quarter and started pulling away.
Moore opened the last quarter with a 18-footer from the corner and added two free throws before Webb converted a three-point play. She drove and scored off a pass from Moore and then added the free throw for a 47-37 lead with 5:29 left.
"They present a lot of problems," Garringer said. "The second half, we did a much better job of reacting to their traps."
A driving bucket by Sydney Dunbar had Alma within six at 49-43 with 2:38 left, but Mountainburg scored the final seven points.
Webb finished with 20 points, 10 rebounds and six blocked shots. Moore had 19 points, and Peters added 16 points and nine boards.
Wright led Alma with 14 points.
Alma 65, Mountainburg 28
BOYS – The Airedales were locked in a battle with Mountainburg before a surge late in the first half.
"I explained to my team, the great thing about sports sometimes is that you get to learn a life lesson," Alma head coach Stan Flenor said. "One is that you need to be prepared and focused to start a basketball game. We certainly were not focused and started real slow. We gained our ground and picked up the pace a little bit."
A driving bucket by Lonnie Campbell and a 3-pointer by Trey Allen had the Dragons within 20-16 with 1:24 left in the first half before Alma reeled off eight straight points in a minute. Mason Wight drilled a 3-pointer, Jake Folkerts dished to Braxton Anderson inside, and Braylon Parker ended the half with a 3 as Alma forged a 28-16 lead.
"We got some stops and some key baskets inside," Flenor said. "Our press took hold and we were able to wear them down. Give them credit, they played hard. They did a good job with a zone against us and made us attack them. Life is full of lessons, and we got a good one tonight."
The Airedales really started pulling away with a 20-point outing in the third quarter. Up 33-21 with 5:24 left in the third quarter, Alma reeled off nine straight points, capped by Grant Baker’s three-point play. Baker added a pair of buckets and Alex Beneux finished a fast-break with a layup to push Alma ahead, 48-23 after three quarters.
"We came out and worked inside-out," Flenor said. "We hit a couple of threes and got some inside baskets. We forced 22 turnovers and finally got our bearings. We scored a lot of points in the first few minutes of the third quarter, and then we brought our next five in and they extended the lead for us. That’s what we need. We’re doing this to get nonconference games in but also to build some depth."
The Airedales invoked the mercy rule in the fourth quarter.
Baker led Alma with 12 points, including a pair of three-point plays and a putback. Folkerts added 10 points, and Anderson nine.
Cedarville 56, Mulberry 30
BOYS – The Pirates blew out to a 17-6 lead after a quarter behind Garrett Parson, who scored seven of his game-high 16 points, and never looked back.
Cedarville increased its lead to 31-8 at the half.
"We challenged them to get out fast," Cedarville head coach Andrew Tencleve said. "We hadn’t played in eight days. We played real solid defensively. We made some shots and jumped out on them."
Parson scored seven more points in the third quarter as Cedarville took a 45-18 advantage into the last quarter.
Dillon Jones scored eight points to lead Mulberry.
Mulberry 50, Cedarville 44
GIRLS – The Lady Yellow Jackets held on for the win a night after winning the Lavaca Golden Arrow Classic.
Mulberry built a 13-5 lead after a quarter and 26-14 advantage at the half before Cedarville made it close by outscoring the Lady Yellow Jackets in the second half.
Bailee Murphy scored eight points in the third quarter and Morgan Williams hit a pair of 3-pointers as Cedarville cut its deficit to 39-28 before Allie Arnold scored nine points of her 10 points in the fourth quarter as the Lady Pirates outscored Mulberry 16-11 in the last quarter.
Logan Archer scored 16 points for Mulberry, and Sam Cagle added 13 points, including five free throws in the fourth quarter to help the Lady Yellow Jackets hold off Cedarville.
Murphy scored 14 points to lead Cedarville.