Despite a sluggish first quarter on offense, the Afton Lady Eagles rolled to a 61-50 victory over Morrisville, Mo., Saturday morning in the championship game of the Girls’ Bronze division in the 63rd annual Northeastern A&M High School Tournament.
Playing before a large crowd in the Student Activities Center, coach Ronnie Maple’s Lady Eagles outscored the Lady Panthers 47-36 over the final three quarters to secure the victory.
Morrisville, winners of the Girls’ Gold bracket last year, received five straight points from Rachel Phillips and a layup by Shelby Bailey to grab a 7-2 lead in the first four minutes of the game.
Afton responded with a 12-0 run to build a 14-7 margin with just a minute left in the first quarter.
Seven points by Macy Gibson, along with a putback from Darby Todd and a field goal and free throw by Ashley Carroll, ignited the Lady Eagles rally.
A 3-point field goal by Sydnie Wilkins, along with a layup by Stephanie Beavers and two free throws by Kasey Painter, rallied the Lady Panthers to a 14-14 tie at the end of the first quarter.
Following a breakaway layup by Kasey Painter to start the second quarter, Afton went on an 11-point outburst to create a 25-16 cushion with 4:43 until halftime. Eight straight points by Gibson and a 3-pointer by Shelbie Van Pelt fueled Afton’s run.
Van Pelt canned another 3-pointer and Darby Todd hit two field goals as the Lady Eagles maintained a 32-25 lead at intermission.
Four straight points by Beavers, along with layups by Kayla Painter and Kasey Painter, reduced the deficit to 34-33 for the Lady Panthers with 2:23 left in the third quarter.
Afton received two straight field goals each by Ashley Carroll and Todd to increase the lead to 42-34 entering the final eight minutes.
Layups by Phillips and Bailey pulled Morrisville to a 44-38 deficit in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter.
Creating five straight turnovers, Afton unleashed a 10-2 run over the next two minutes to open up a 54-40 margin. Six points by Van Pelt, along with field goals by Carroll and Todd, accounted for the run.
Over the final three minutes, the Lady Eagles received four points from Todd and three from Gibson to seal the victory.
Gibson led all scorers with 24 points while Todd contributed 14, Van Pelt 12 and Carroll 11 for the Lady Eagles.
Kasey Painter paced the Lady Panthers with 16 points along with Beavers 11, Phillips 10, Bailey nine and Wilkins and Kayla Painter had two each.