"Joy shot througout my body after Karissa Longlois made that winning shot." said Macksville senior Kristina Murphy when Langlois shot a long 3-pointer several feet beyond the key with 1:20 left on the clock, giving the Macksville Mustangs a 36-33 win over the Cunningham Wildcats in the second round of Pratt-Skyline's 54 Classic Basketball Tournament Friday.
It was touch and go for those last few seconds. Now, the Lady Wildcats did have their chances. Several of them in fact. But the Lady Stangs prevailed, thus moved on to Saturday's fifth place game facing league rival, the Kinsley Coyotes who had earlier defeated Attica.
Even though Cunningham out-scored the Lady Stangs in the middle quarters, what happened in the first and four quarters settled the score, with Macksville getting their third win of the season and second playing Cunningham.
Four Macksville players made the scoring column in the first quarter with Langlois getting four points, three of them coming from her first 3-pointer. Tara Bunker, Mindy Wood and Selena Galan each made a basket.
Macksville's defense held the Wildcats to just five points and the Lady Stangs took a 10-5 lead going into the second quarter. The Stangs could have widened their lead, but going 1-4 from the foul line didn't help much.
The Lady Stangs just couldn't buy a basket in the second quarter, missing several underneath. But the Wildcats faired a little better, out-scoring the Mustangs 10-12, the score going into the half with Macksville leading 20-17.
Tara Bunker led the scoring with three free throws and one basket followed by Macksville seniors Wood and Langlois each making a 2-pointer. Clara Cross made a free throw.
"We came out hard in the first half and played as a team," said Bunker.
Having nine points spread among Wood, Kiley Freeman, Bunker and Murphy "might" have been just enough for the Lady Stangs to keep the lead going into the half, but that was not the case as the Wildcats stormed back, tied the score and went ahead 23-25. That's when Macksville's head coach Nathanial Norman called his second time-out.
The Lady Stangs regained the lead. But in the final minutes, Cunningham's press forced two Macksville turnovers and scored after each one which gave the Wildcats the lead once more, the score going into the final quarter with the Wildcats ahead 29-30.
Neither team had much success adding points to the scoreboard in the fourth quarter, that is, until Langlois got what would be the eventual winning basket. Two time-outs later, Macksville held on for a 36-33 win.