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Saturday marked the Championship round of the 53rd annual Stockton boys tournament and the 13th annual Stockton Girls tournament and we were treated to several very good games and notable performances. Here is what you missed from Championship Saturday.
5th Place Game: 4 Lamar Lady Tigers vs 6 Buffalo Lady Bison
I thought coming into this game that Lamar could have an issue with the size of Buffalo but that theory was thwarted early on as the speed of Lamar was able counteract Buffalo behind great play from Zavrie Wiss and Ashlynn Stettler. Buffalo’s 6’0 freshman Leah White and 6’1 senior Raegan Carter was able to keep them in the game for a while but Lamar was able to pull away way late for a consolation championship.
Final: 57-37 Lamar
3rd Place Game: 5 Stockton Lady Tigers vs 3 Marion C. Early Lady Panthers
This was a fantastic game to start. Both defenses were on fire and the stars for each team weren’t able to find their groove. Stockton junior Faith King hit the go ahead three ball for Stockton midway through the quarter and Stockton led 10-9 after one. MCE went on a run to open the quarter and quickly open up a 13-10 lead. MCE’s Maggie Painter and Taylor Blehm responded in the second quarter with a nice run of their own and built a 20-14 lead going into the half. The two remained deadlocked in a tremendous game in the second half where MCE led the entire way. Blehm and Stockton’s Summer Kenney went back and forth but MCE ultimately got the last laugh in with a big third place win
Final: 42-31 MCE
Championship: 1 El Dorado Springs vs 2 Miller
This was the expected championship coming in and it lived up to the billing. For the second night in a row, the girls division ended with a state ranked game as Miller comes into the game as the 3rd ranked team in class two and ELDO the 2nd ranked team in class three. Class two held the advantage early on as buckets from Rachel Nunez and Kendall Neely put Miller up 8-2 midway through the opening quarter. ELDO responded like you would expect. Tenlie Steward hit a three near the end of the first quarter to tie the game at 8. The lid came off the bucket for both teams a bit with Nunez having to go to the bench with three first quarter fouls and SWMO Superstar Macie Mays capitalized with a pair of threes in her absence. Miller fought to stay close but one Mays three ended up being the difference in a 22-19 halftime lead for the Lady Bulldogs. The third quarter was all ELDO as they were able to take advantage of their experience and having the best player on the floor as they busted open a 35-25 lead. Miller went on a few runs in the final quarter but seemed like they couldn’t bust through the 7 point deficit as ELDO outlasted Miller.
Final: 53-45 ELDO
5th Place Game: (4) Mt. Vernon Mt’neers vs (7) Buffalo Bison
This one started all Buffalo as the size of the Bison was a problem for the Mt’neers with 6’5 Blair Abraham and 6’7 Joseph Horinek. Buffalo jumped up to a 8-2 lead but Mt. Vernon was able to limit their deficit to just 12-7 after one. Mt. Vernon sophomore Jarrett Zerby got hot from the three point line in the second quarter and the lead was cut to just three points. However, the size of Buffalo proved once again to be a factor in this outcome as the Bison dominance on the boards allowed the lead to swell to 27-18 at the half. Mt. Vernon went on a nice run led by Zerby and fellow sophomore Juliun Hernandez to cut the lead to just two after a 7-0 run to start the third quarter. A three next time down by Zerby briefly gave the Mt’neers a lead but Buffalo responded with a methodical run of their own that resulted in a 40-33 lead going into the 4th quarter. Mt. Vernon switched back to a man defense and found more success and cut the deficit back to just two points. Mt. Vernon wasn’t able to ever complete the comeback as Buffalo held on late to secure the 5th place win.
Final: 49-42 Buffalo
3rd Place Game: 3 Lamar Tigers vs 5 Lockwood Tigers
It was Lamar’s second straight battle of the Tigers after falling to Stockton last night and Lockwood proved to be just as valiant of a competitor as the first half was tight for the most part. Lockwood would go on a run late in the second quarter and build up an 8 point lead at half 32-24. The lead was erased early into the third quarter where an and-one from Ian Ngugi put Lamar up 41-39 midway through the third quarter. The battle continued throughout the fourth quarter with the two teams exchanging leads throughout most of the quarter until Henry Schnelle and Lockwood was able to build a 58-53 lead with a minute and a half remaining in the quarter. Lockwood was able to make enough plays late and got the win.
Final: 59-55 Lockwood
Championship: 1 El Dorado Springs Bulldogs vs 2 Stockton Tigers
It was a nightmarish start for the host Stockton Tigers as ELDO jumped out to a 8-0 lead early on and Stockton had no answers. ELDO junior Landon Murray on the defensive side of the ball and was picking the pockets of Stockton’s Ball handlers clean over and over as the Bulldogs jumped out to a 34-18 halftime lead thanks to a Murray floater at the buzzer. The third quarter was physical and not many points was scored before a Jase Hardesty three ball. Stockton tried to make a comeback late but the rout was on and ELDO took back the championship trophy.
Final: 64-39 ELDO