Lions and Lady Lions fall in District Tournament finals
Manila's senior boys and girls entered last week's district tournament at Hoxie as conference champions and number one seeds. But their opponents paid little heed to what transpired during the regular season, as host Hoxie knocked off the Lions 60-42 Friday night while Earle shot its way past the Lady Lions 66-53 Thursday night.
The hometown Mustangs jumped on top of Manila 22-11 after the first period and held a commanding 38-19 halftime lead. Hoxie took a 49-28 bulge into the final quarter of play.
Colton Watson pumped in a game high 29 points, including seven three pointers to lead the Mustangs. Tristan Privett and Jacob Defries chipped in 13 points apiece to aid the Hoxie attack.
Brady Jones led the Lions with 18 points.
Lady Lions vs. Earle
The Lady Bulldogs raced to an early 14-4 lead, thanks to the strong inside play of Felicia Gibbs and the three point shooting of Kayla Pope. Earle closed the opening quarter holding a 16-10 advantage.
Manila battled back in the second stanza, finally squaring the game 22-22 just before intermission on back to back treys by Kirsten Adcock and Kristen Wise.
Earle took a brief two point edge to begin the second half, but the Lady Lions came right back with an offensive stick-back by Shelby Wallace and a pair of Emily Cook free throws to take their only lead of the night, 26-24. The Lady Bulldogs answered with three consecutive baskets to snatch the lead back and never trailed again.
A three pointer by Adcock pulled Manila to within one at the 4:21 mark of the third quarter, but an offensive stick-back by Earle's Lajericha Toombs pushed the Lady Bulldog lead to 32-29. Back to back baskets from Shakiniah Poole gave Earle a 36-31 advantage with 2:48 left in the quarter. Adcock drained a long three pointer to pull Manila to within two, but the Lady Bulldogs closed the period on a 10-2 run, giving Earle a 46-36 margin heading into the final frame.
Manila never got closer than nine points in the fourth quarter as the Lady Bulldogs advanced to the district title game.
Pope led Earle with 18 points while Gibbs finished with 14. Earle connected on 13-24 foul shots and drained four treys on the night.
Wallace led the Lady Lions with 19 points while Cook and Adcock also finished in double digits with 12 and 11 points respectively. Taylor Teague scored six while Wise finished with five. Manila hit 19-29 free throws and made four three pointers.
Regional tournament play begins this week at Hoxie. The Lady Lions will begin regional tournament play Thursday night at 7 p.m. against Valley Springs while the senior boys will open regional tournament play Thursday night at 8:30 against Melbourne.