Lady Lions nip Highland 44-41 to advance to quarterfinals of NEA Tournament

Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Lady Lion Kirsten Adcock (15) knocks down one of her six three pointers in NEA Tournament action last week in Jonesboro at the Convocation Center.

Manila rode the hot shooting hand of sophomore Kirsten Adcock and held off a determined Highland Lady Rebel team to post a 44-41 victory in the first round of the Northeast Arkansas Invitational Tournament Wednesday morning at the Convocation Center in Jonesboro.

Adcock drilled six three pointers en route to a 20 point performance as the ninth seeded Lady Lions advanced to the quarterfinals Monday afternoon against top seeded Nettleton.

Manila held a slim 12-10 lead after the opening quarter but three consecutive treys, one by Deven Burrow and a pair by Adcock, pushed the Lady Lion lead to 21-13 with 5:35 left in the half. Highland fought back and closed the gap to 26-24 at the half with a late surge of their own, thanks mainly to Hope Isaacs, who scored nine points in the second quarter alone.

Manila junior Shelby Wallace (21) shoots for two points in first round action of the NEA Tournament in Jonesboro. (Town Crier photos/Trent Fletcher)

Highland cut the lead to one point with a three pointer by Tabby McNulty midway through the third period, but the Lady Lions answered when Adcock drained another three at the 4:18 mark to push the Manila lead back to 33-29. A pair of free throws from Kailen Shelton and a 10-foot Kristen Wise jumper gave the Lady Lions a 37-31 advantage at the 19 second mark. An inside bucket by Sydney Shackelford cut the Manila lead to 37-33 entering the final period of play.

Highland tied the game 37-37 with a 15-footer by Isaacs with 6:24 left in the fourth quarter. Manila came right back when Shelby Wallace nailed a pair of free throws and followed with a 12-footer at the 4:59 mark, giving the Lady Lions a 41-37 advantage.

The Lady Rebels made one last charge, tying the game at 41-41 with 3:37 left when Isaacs nailed two free throws followed by a Shackelford lay-up.

Manila guard Taylor Teague (5) drives for two points in NEA Tournament action against Highland.

Burrow nailed what would be the game winning three pointer to put Manila ahead 44-41 with 1:30 left in the game. Highland had a couple of opportunities to tie, but a missed shot and a turnover at the buzzer ended Highland's comeback bid.

Following Adcock in scoring for the Lady Lions were Wallace and Burrow, who both had eight points apiece. Shelton scored four while Wise and Taylor Teague netted two points each. Manila hit eight of 15 foul shots and drilled eight treys.

Isaacs led the Lady Rebels with 17 points while Shackelford finished with 12. Highland hit six of eight foul shots and made five three pointers.

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