Crane nips the Ladycats

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

After dumping Reeds Spring 38-27 last week, the Cassville Lady Wildcats came up one point short on their road trip to Crane on Monday night. Crane's Addy Reel torched the nets for five treys in the first half, and then the Lady Pirates withstood a furious Cassville comeback to secure a 44-43 victory.

With Reel scoring at will from beyond the arc, Crane built a 28-19 halftime lead. But the Lady Pirates cooled off against the Cassville zone in the third quarter, and a pair of Emily Speakman free throws pulled the Lady Wildcats within 40-34 at the final break.

Cassville exploded at the start of the fourth quarter to earn a 40-40 tie with 5:28 to play. Kennadi Howard posted up and scored off the glass, then Raeghan Blisard snared an offensive board and scored. Katelyn Pitts tossed a perfect inbound lob from the sideline that Jaime Everett converted into the tying bucket.

But the Lady Wildcats could never capture the lead. Loni Johnson scored to put Crane back in front but then missed the three-point opportunity from the charity stripe, and the Lady Pirates led by 42-40. Riley Israel connected with a short jumper in the lane to extend the lead to 44-40 with 4:20 to play.

The Lady Wildcats missed on a pair of scoring opportunities, and Crane squeezed the clock against the Cassville zone. Over three minutes passed without a score until Howard nailed Cassville's only trey of the game to cut the lead to a point.

With 12 seconds remaining, Crane's Maggie McMenamy missed the front end of a bonus opportunity, but the Lady Wildcats had the ball stripped in the lane while angling for the winning shot. Johnson missed at the line after the immediate Cassville foul, but the clock ran out as the Lady Pirates held on for the win.

Cassville is now 2-2 for the season.

Cassville scorers: Kennadi Howard, 19; Jaime Everett, 12; Emily Speakman, 10; and Raeghan Blisard, 2.

Crane scorers: Addie Reel, 17; Maggie McMenamy, 15; Loni Johnson, 5; Jalee Johnson, 3; Riley Israel, 2; and Kylie Vaught, 2.

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