EL DORADO – Maize South went on a 20-2 run in the third quarter and that was enough for them as they repeated as Lady Cat Classic champions. The run gave Maize South a 56-42 win over the Lady Thunderbirds of Circle.
The loss drops Circle to 11-2 on the year. Their only two losses have come to 5A No. 2 McPherson and 5A No. 5 Maize South.
“Our two losses are to the top teams in 5A,” Circle head coach Brian Henry said. “That’s not too bad of a record.”
The run which came out of no where in a game that was neck-and-neck for the 18 minutes of the game flipped and it all went Maize South’s way.
It started with Alexa Davison throwing herself out of bounds and Maize south senior Katie Wagner dove on the ground, causing a jump ball. Then back-to-back Circle players were called for stepping on either the endline or the sideline.
With Wagner battling down low, it was Kaydyn Davison who commanded the perimeter. She hit two threes with Riley Kennedy hitting a three of her own.
“I’ll take the blame on not doing enough to adjust to what they were doing,” Henry said. “They’re a really good basketball team.”
Wagner finished with 14 points in the second half, including going 7-of-7 from the free throw line in the half. She finished with 20 points and was named the tournament’s top player.
Circle never went away even when the lead reached 45-29 after three quarters.
Lanna Chase had an and-one opportunity and then followed it up with a three to cut the deficit to 48-37 with 6:31 to go in regulation. Chase would hit another three, with Mallory Cowman following it up with a bucket, getting the Lady T-Birds within 50-42 with 4:48 remaining.
They were unable to get any closer as Maize South milked the clock and would limit Circle to one-shot opportunities.
Circle led 23-21 at half behind the shooting of Kimalee Cook. She had 11 points at halftime, including back-to-back threes that gave Circle their first lead at 20-19 with 1:40 to go in regulation. She followed it up with another three.
Cook hit a three to start the second half and it felt like the T-Birds might be in control but that’s when the game flipped. Wagner started getting aggressive and getting to the line. Maize South shot zero free throws in the first half and nine in the second half, going 9-of-9.
Kaydyn Davison had 14 points, with four threes for the Mavericks.
Cook led the Lady T-Birds with 15 points, Chase had 14 for Circle.
“They say a loss is just a chance to get better,” Henry said. “We have that now and can do that on Tuesday.”
Circle – 11; 12; 6; 13 – 42
Maize South – 15; 6; 24; 11 – 56
Circle: Cook 15, Chase 14, Cowman 8, Claycamp 4, Ysidro 1
Maize South: Wagner 20, Kaydyn Davison 14, Kennedy 8, McCormack 7, McCann 3, Alexa Davison 2, Kratzer 2