Lady Pirates win C4 D8 title with 62-35 win over Southern Boone

Chris Bowie
Boonville Daily News
The Boonville Lady Pirates basketball team celebrates after beating Southern Boone 62-35 to capture the Class 4 District 8 championship Wednesday night at the Windsor gymnasium. Boonville, 23-2 on the season, will move on to the sectional playoffs on Wednesday, March 10 to face either Macon or Hallsville.

There are several words that could be used to describe Wednesday’s 62-35 win over Southern Boone in the championship game in the Class 4 District 8 Tournament.

You could use dominating for one as the Lady Pirates led by double digits for pretty much the entire game.

However, the one word that describes Wednesday’s dismantling of the Eagles is relentless.

Why you say? In addition to winning by 27 points, Boonville also forced the Eagles into 27 turnovers with countless pressure for 32 minutes.

That alone is one reason why the Lady Pirates, at 23-2 on the season, is moving on to the sectional round of the state playoffs next Wednesday, March 10 at either Macon or Hallsville.

While it’s been a long time coming for this group of seniors, who had never won a district title until Wednesday, Boonville head coach Jaryt Hunziker said after the last two years of ending their season too soon, this team was ready with a different mentality.

“We knew we were going to take their best shot early, but we responded and finished the first half the way we needed,” Hunziker said. “We had so much fight in us that I knew we were going to have a successful evening.”

The Lady Pirates were definitely successful with four players in double figures compared to just one for SBC.

As Boonville junior point-guard Addi Brownfield said it best before the game: “I’m nervous but I am also excited.”

Maybe Brownfield and her teammates were nervous because this would be the fourth time that Boonville has played SBC, winning the first-three meetings all by double figures.

Or maybe the Lady Pirates were nervous because each time the Eagles have cut into Boonville’s lead, going from losing by 20 the first-two games to 11 in the last meeting.

Hunziker said SBC has a great team but that the Lady Pirates are different this year, especially with knowing how they need to play to win some big games. “Every time we do so it just adds to our confidence and the way we play,” Hunziker said. “Our defense has been so solid this year game in and game out that teams just struggle to score at times. Our defense has been our No. 1 offense throughout.”

The defense was definitely Boonville’s best friend on Wednesday. While forcing 26 turnovers in the semifinal round against Fulton, the Lady Pirates were once again relentless throughout while turning a 5-2 deficit early on to lead SBC 14-12 after one.

Boonville never trailed after that by outscoring SBC 19-7 in the second period thanks to a 14-0 run to open the quarter. The Lady Eagles also went almost six minutes without scoring from the first quarter to the second period.

Add it up and it’s no wonder Boonville led 33-19 at the half after shooting 42 percent from the field.

Although the Lady Pirates were 16 minutes away from winning their first district title since 2017, they also knew that SBC had the firepower to mount a comeback at any time.

However the Eagles never got any closer than 12 points in the second half, which actually came on the first basket of the half to cut the lead to 33-21.

Boonville still outscored SBC 16-11 in the third period and led by as much as 19 after a basket by senior Kourtney Kendrick to make it 49-30.

Four different players also scored in the third quarter for Boonville, who was now eight minutes away from moving on to the next round.

Fortunately for the Lady Pirates, they had enough left in the tank to still outscore SBC 13-5 in the fourth quarter to win by 27.

Boonville’s biggest lead of the ball game also happened to be in the fourth period after a basket by senior Jodie Bass to make it 62-33.

As for the scoring, Brownfield finished with 19 points along with six rebounds, five assists and four steals. Kendrick had 12 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals, while Kennedy Renfrow also chipped in 12 points, four rebounds, two assists and one steal, Jodie Bass 11 points, three steals, two rebounds and two assists, Brooke Eichelberger six points and six rebounds, and Emma West with two points, one rebound, one assist and one steal.

For SBC, Chloe Bukowsky had 13 and Trinity Schupp nine.

The Lady Pirates also had another great night shooting the ball while hitting of 24 of 57 shots from the field for 42 percent, 6 of 16 from the three for 38 percent and 8 of 9 from the foul line for 89 percent.