The McDonald County Lady Mustangs stormed back from a nine-point deficit to knock off Neosho 36-33, while Diamond fought back from a fourth quarter deficit to edge Seneca in overtime 45-40 in a pair of games from the Seneca Girls Basketball Tournament on Tuesday at Seneca High School.
The Lady Mustangs (5-12) kicked off the evening with a thrilling victory over the Lady Wildcats. It appeared in the early going that McDonald County was in trouble as Neosho jumped out to a 17-8 advantage in the first quarter.
The Lady Wildcats dominated the floor in that period as they forced turnovers and converted them into easy points. Morgan Rathmann scored eight points in the first quarter while her Wildcats held Lady Mustangs standouts Preslea Reece to three points and Sarah Rickman to none in the quarter.
In fact, Neosho kept Rickman off the scoreboard in the entire first half as the Wildcats tried to control the paint. She still contributed, however, as she helped the Lady Mustangs hold Neosho to just six points in the second quarter. Reece, meanwhile, scored five points in the second quarter and Rickman had six in the third to help the Lady Mustangs pull within 33-29 at the end of the third quarter.
Defense was the key late in the game as the Lady Mustangs shut Neosho out 7-0 in the decisive fourth quarter. Reece's basket with 1:41 left gave the Lady Mustangs a 36-33 advantage after Alisha Ballard tied the game at 33 with a pair of free throws with 2:15 to go. Rickman sank a free throw with 6.5 seconds left to seal it.
The Lady Mustangs were led by Reece's 14 points, while Courtni Smith finished with eight, Baili Nelson one, Rickman seven, Ballard four and Danielle Pierce two.
Morgan Rogers paced the Lady Wildcats with 13 points while Rathmann had 12, Chelsey Henry four and Brooke Stauffer four.
In the nightcap, Diamond fought back from a 32-28 deficit in the third quarter and took the lead (40-39) on two free throws by Hanna Million with 44 seconds left. The Lady Indians tied the game with 22 ticks left in regulation on a free throw by Courtney Cook to send the game to overtime.
In the OT, the Lady Wildcats hit three free throws and a jumper by Macie Seward while shutting out Seneca's offense.
"We fought through," Diamond coach Brian Brimacome said. That was our fifth game in six days and we showed a lot of heart, I thought. We played hard."
Cady Littlefield had a big game for the Lady Wildcats with 26 points. Million finished with 10 points while Seward, Asia Mahan and Kirsten Eden each had three.
Molli Cooper led Seneca with 15 points while Rachel Butterfield added 10, Mirana Heath six, Courtney Cook five, Elena Wood two and Willow Rhoades two.
Page 2 of 2 - Foul trouble and turnovers plagued the Lady Indians, who led the game 19-18 at halftime.
Said Lady Indians coach Bob Coffey, "In the first half we committed too many fouls. Consequently, we put ourselves in a deficit position against a team we don't rebound well against."