Will play KC Southeast in Class 3 sectional game on Wednesday, March 1st at Harrisonville starting at 7:45 p.m.
The Boonville Lady Pirates basketball team won the most important half of basketball when it counted Saturday against the California Pintos in the championship in the Class 3 District 13 Tournament at Versailles.
While the Lady Pintos dominated the first half, leading by as much as 10, Boonville controlled the final 16 minutes of the ballgame by outscoring California 36-11 en route to a convincing 60-45 victory.
WHERE DO THEY GO FROM HERE?
The Lady Pirates, 24-2 on the season, will now advance to the sectional round of the state playoffs on Wednesday, March 1st at Harrisonville High School against Kansas City Southeast starting at 7:45 p.m.
HUNZIKER KNEW TEAM WAS STILL IN THE GAME AT HALF
“At halftime we knew what we needed to do the second half to secure another district title. The team never hung their heads or pointed fingers, they stepped up the second half and did what was asked. I’m so proud of the fight we gave throughout the whole game. During the first half we didn’t take care of the ball and made many mental mistakes which allowed California to take a 10-point lead into the half. We knew with the face pace that they like to play it would eventually affect their outside shooting. We had a huge third quarter defensively by holding California to two points but continued our efforts into the fourth by only giving up nine more points. We talked this past week about the importance of knocking down free throws and how in the postseason they could easily affect the outcome. We went 27 of 35 which was the difference.”
FREE THROWS WERE HUGE
You could look at several factors in the Lady Pirates winning the game against California. But none were bigger than at the foul line as Boonville finished 27 of 35 for 77 percent compared to only 7 of 12 for California for 58 percent.
Junior Jamie Lemmons also came up big from the foul line by hitting 13 of 17 shots.
TALE OF TWO HALVES
It’s easy to see why the Lady Pintos led Boonville 34-24 at the break.
Aside from hitting seven three-pointers in the first half, California also forced Boonville to turn the ball over 11 times.
However the three point shots were huge, especially early on as California jumped out to a 16-12 lead after one.
Of course it didn’t help that Boonville hit on only two of 12 shots from the field in the first quarter or that they were 5 of 22 for the half.
Nonetheless, the Lady Pirates still managed to make it a two-point ballgame at 22-20 with 4:57 left after two foul shots by Lemmons.
Boonville senior Hannah Fuemmeler said California was definitely hitting their shots. “We weren’t hitting our shots and we turned it over a lot in the first half,” Fuemmeler said. “I think we were a little frazzled but at halftime coach said he knew we could do it and we came out in the second half and didn’t give up. I think it started falling for us and California slowed down and we just kept fighting.”
If the Lady Pirates were frazzled early on, they didn’t show it despite being outscored 18-12 again in the second quarter.
BOONVILLE SETS THE TONE IN THE THIRD QUARTER
If you had any doubts about the Lady Pirates will to win, all you had to do was take a look at the third quarter.
With the Lady Pintos pretty much dominating the first half, Boonville came out and cut the lead to three in the first-three minutes at 34-31.
Coach Hunziker said he also thought California lost its legs a little bit in the second half after pushing the ball pretty much on every possession in the first.
That would explain for the 20-2 advantage by the Lady Pirates in the third and the 13-0 run over the final four minutes.
Edwards also had her best quarter in the third with eight of her 17 points. Lemmons had seven.
But even then while outscoring California by 18, the Lady Pirates were only up by eight at 44-36 after three.
PINTOS NO MATCH IN THE FOURTH
Needing a big fourth quarter to make up for the eight-point deficit, the Lady Pintos had the lead down to three at 45-42 with 6:30 left.
However, over the next-three minutes, Boonville went on a 9-0 run to push the lead back to 11 at 53-42 and then outscored the Lady Pintos 7-3 for the rest of the game to win by 15.
LEMMONS TAKES CONTROL
Although 13 of her 21 points came from the foul line, Lemmons stepped it up when she had to while also pulling down 14 rebounds for a double-double.
Edwards finished the game with 17 points, seven steals and six rebounds while Camryn Monteer added 13 points, three steals, one rebound and one assist, Hannah Fuemmeler five points, three steals, two assists and one rebound and Kate Peterson one point, seven rebounds, three steals and one assist.
For California, Elizabeth Lutz had 17, Emma Bailey 13 and Brittney Ellington with 10.
LADY PIRATES STRUGGLE FROM THE FIELD
The Lady Pirates will have to improve on their field goal shooting on Wednesday if they want to make their third trip to the quarterfinals in three years.
While hitting just 15 of 39 shots from the field for 38 percent, Boonville also struggled from the three-point arc by converting on only 3 of 12 shots for 25 percent.