The Lady Warriors started the game with a strong 7-0 run. Purdy responded with a 10-0 blitz of its own. The lead seesawed for the remainder of the quarter, and McAuley led 18-16 at the end of the period.
Even though Purdy was plagued by turnovers and foul trouble in the early going, the Lady Eagles reached halftime with a slim 28-27 lead.
The Lady Eagle finally broke loose in the third quarter, and a game-changing run late in the frame gave the visitors a 44-35 cushion. McAuley was forced to foul in the fourth quarter, and the Purdy girls met the pressure-packed challenge, hitting free throws down the stretch. Purdy was 14-of-17 from the line for the game.
Purdy's offense was led by Addy Roller with 23 points, followed by Audrey Patton with 16 and Brooke Swadley with 10. Jae Stephens led McAuley with 21 points, as the Lady Warriors shot 9-28 from beyond the arc.
The Purdy Eagles beat back Joplin McAuley 71-59 on Friday, Feb. 13 to regain control of their own destiny in the Ozark 7 race.
McAuley, which dealt a crushing blow to Southwest last Monday night, could not contain Purdy's Mason Roller and Blake Williams. Roller powered for 25 and runningmate Williams struck for 22 for the Eagles.
Purdy opened with an 11-0 run and finished the first quarter up 23-11. The Eagles led 32-22 at halftime, and while McAuley played within a basket in the second half, the game itself was never in doubt.
Brant Russell led McAuley with 22 points. Kevin O'Keefe scored 14 and Garret Wagner 11 in the losing effort.
Purdy has a six-day break to prepare for the rematch with Southwest on Thursday, Feb. 19.