After a great start in the first quarter Thursday night against Helias in the Class 4 District 10 championship game at Capital City High School, the Boonville Lady Pirates basketball team had to feel good about its chances for the rest of the game.


But then the second quarter happened as Boonville manifested only two points.


That one bad stretch seemed to set the tone for the rest of the game as Helias took control from that point on for a 58-49 victory.


The Lady Pirates closed out the season at 22-4 overall. As for Helias, they will march on to the sectional round of the state playoffs on Tuesday, March 10 at Missouri S&T in Rolla. The Lady Crusaders (15-12) will play Sullivan (23-2).


Boonville Lady Pirates basketball coach Jaryt Hunziker said when you play in big games like this one against a quality opponent, you have to limit long stretches of struggling offensively.


“The second quarter hurt us tonight,” Hunziker said. “After coming out strong and getting out fast to a 12-4 lead, we then went ice cold from the field allowing Helias to chip away and eventually take the lead. We only saw the ball drop thru the net once in the second quarter. Once our offense started to come alive in the second half, Helias would answer with big shot after big shot. They couldn’t miss tonight, which didn’t allow us to get the much needed stops on the defensive end.”


Hunziker said Lindsey Byers also used her length and scoring skills in the lane to cause us problems defensively.


Byers and Kylie Bernskoetter were the only players in double figures for Helias with 19 and 18 points, respectively. Lainy Lamb and Rylee Kolb each had eight.


“The first half we did a great job containing both Byers and Kylie Bernskoetter, but they then came alive in the third quarter, scoring 17 of their 21 points that quarter,” Hunziker said. “Helias dominated at the free throw line as well. However, you have to respect the continued fight that we had up until the end trying to cut the lead back down to a possession but their ability to hit free throws sealed it for them.”


Free throw shooting was also one of the keys for Helias. While Boonville converted on only 1 of 4 shots for 25 percent, the Lady Crusaders were 20 of 25 from the line for 80 percent. Fourteen of those came in the final period as Helias was 14 of 17 from the charity stripe.


Nonetheless, the Lady Pirates couldn’t have asked for a better start to the game while jumping out to a 12-4 lead with 4:14 left.


With everything clicking on both ends of the floor and Helias struggling against Boonville’s pressure, it seemed almost like a sure thing for the Lady Pirates.


However over the final three minutes and 25 seconds in the first period, Helias outscored Boonville 9-2 to cut the lead to one at 14-13.


The Lady Pirates also shot slightly under 50 percent in the first period by hitting 5 of 12 shots from the field.


But that all changed in the second quarter as Boonville went just 1 of 12 from the field.


Boonville sophomore Addison Brownfield scored the Lady Pirates only points of the quarter to make it 16-13. However it was all Helias after that with eight unanswered points to lead at the half by a score of 20-16.


The Lady Crusaders also won the third quarter as Byers and Bernskoetter combined for 17 of the team’s 21 points to extend the lead to nine at 42-33.


As for Boonville, they managed 17 points in the period and hit four threes to cut the lead to four (23-19) with 6:45 left. The Lady Pirates also hit 6 of 10 shots from the field in the third quarter.


Boonville never got any closer than six in the final period. Junior Kourtney Kendrick scored with 5:49 left to cut the lead to 45-39. Then, with 2:56 left, junior Jodie Bass buried a three to make it 51-45.


The Lady Pirates also matched Helias with 16 points in the fourth. However, it was the foul line that allowed Helias to pull away as the Lady Crusaders cashed in on 14 on their 16 points.


Addison Brownfield netted 13 points to lead all scorers for Boonville. Brownfield also had five rebounds and one assist.


Jodie Bass finished the game with 12 points, two rebounds, two assists and two steals while Sophi Waibel added nine points, three rebounds, one assist and one steal, Kourtney Kendrick eight points, five assists, three rebounds and three steals, Kennedy Renfrow three points, two assists, one rebound and one steal, Brooke Eichelberger two points, one rebound and one blocked shot and Emma West with two points and one rebound.