West Monroe and Neville girls basketball teams came up short in the Class 5A and Class 4A semifinals, respectively.
No. 10 West Monroe 32, No. 6 Captain Shreve 47
It wouldn’t be a (17-6) West Monroe game if the Lady Rebels didn’t get off to a slow start. A couple of early turnovers led to a 9-0 deficit in the early goings.
West Monroe head coach John Green is familiar with the slow starts and appropriately called a timeout after (20-5) Captain Shreve’s second field goal. The tactic did not spark any offense, though, as West Monroe was held scoreless for the opening five minutes of the game.
To make matters worse, Shamiyah Butler was shaken up midway through the first quarter.
The Lady Rebels were out-rebounded, 16-6, in the first quarter, and West Monroe had 11 turnovers in the first half
Both offenses struggled into the second quarter. Field goals were hard to come by both clubs. Addison Martin scored her ninth point of the first half in the second quarter to put her team up, 14-5.
The Lady Rebels went into the half down, 21-11.
Unable to turn around their misfortunes in the third quarter, West Monroe continued to struggle in the third quarter with its small lineup. Without Butler’s post presence, West Monroe struggled with the size disadvantage.
Captain Shreve’s lead ballooned to a 33-13 advantage in the third quarter, as West Monroe’s offensive struggles continued in the second half.
Pashonnay Johnson made multiple field goals, including a 3-pointer, for the Lady Rebels down the stretch, but Captain Shreve had already laid the groundwork for their advancement into the Class 5A bracket.
No. 3 Neville 38, No. 2 Huntington 45
The Lady Tigers 18-game win streak was snapped in a semifinal clash with Huntington Wednesday evening.
The (22-3) Lady Tigers had a tough time dealing with (26-2) Huntington’s full court press in the opening minutes, but the Lady Tigers defense certainly kept Neville in a back-and-forth affair. The slow-paced style favored a Lady Tigers team that has allowed just 26.5 points per game this postseason in the early goings. Neville rattled off a 5-0 run to take a 7-4 lead, and the Lady Tigers led 9-8 after the first quarter.
Neville’s offense stagnated in the second quarter, however. Neville could muster just four points over the next five-plus minutes, and Huntington took a 24-14 lead into the half.
Out of the half, Neville went to the post with purpose. Mia Hardin completed an and-one, and the defense on the other end created some transition buckets to reduce the lead to six.
Huntington answered with a 10-0 run before heading into the final quarter with a 41-27 edge.
Going into the fourth, Huntington’s Taylor Bell had nine points, 10 rebounds, four assists, three blocks and six steals.
The Lady Raiders fended off a late rally by the Lady Tigers to advance to the Class 4A State Championship Game.