Morrilton eliminatess Lady Panthers from Class 4A State Tournament

FARMINGTON -- Morrilton showed no lingering effects from having its 29-game winning streak snapped over the weekend.

The Lady Devil Dogs took control in the first half en route to a 64-42 win over Magnolia in the opening round of the Class 4A state basketball tournament Tuesday at Farmington's Cardinal Arena.

Farmington saddled Morrilton with just their second loss of the season over the weekend in the regional finals, but the Lady Devil Dogs slowly pulled away and stayed in control the entire way Tuesday. Sophomore McKenzie Jackson drilled a three-pointer with 5:50 left in the fourth quarter for a 58-28 lead to invoke the Arkansas Activities Association sportsmanship rule.

The Lady Devil Dogs lost their season opener Nov. 6 to Harrison, but won 29 in a row until losing 56-25 on Saturday. Morrilton (30-2) will now advance to face Pulaski Academy in the second round at 4 p.m. Friday.

Morrilton Coach Karin McNabb said winning the state tournament is the ultimate goal and that loss wasn't going to deter her team from that goal.

"In the long run, this [state tournament] is the goal," Mc-Nabb said. "We were happy to get [to the regional final] and wanted to win, but that wasn't going to deter us from this week. That was one game." McNabb said she was pleased with the way her team executed offensively and also limited Magnolia's transition game.

"I thought we did a great job on defense executing, and they can't run transition if we're executing on offense and scoring," McNabb said. "We did a much better job tonight scoring, running the stuff, getting the ball where it needed to go. Everybody hit some shots. That slowed their transition down where they score about 75% of their points off transition." Johnna Brockman, a 5-11 junior, led Morrilton with 18 points and also controlled the boards, while Aubrey Henderson scored 15 and Jessi Hunt chipped in 11.

Shayla Doss led all scorers with 20 points for Magnolia (19-15), while Denezjha Robinson chipped in 12.

Magnolia Coach Keysha Hill agreed Morrilton did the job defensively and controlled the boards, which ultimately was the difference in the game.

"They were very disciplined in locking us down on defense, taking pride in blocking out and limiting us to one shot," Hill said. "That's what happened. We couldn't make shots. Their length affected us. They did a great job."

Class 1A

TAYLOR 55, GUY-PERKINS 28

Taylor built a 31-14 halftime cushion and cruised to a first-round victory over Guy-Perkins at the Class 1A girls state tournament at North Arkansas College in Harrison.

Heidi May finished with 24 points for Taylor, which led 40-22 after three quarters. McKenna Bradford was the only Guy-Perkins player in double figures with 14.

Taylor will play in the second round at 7 o'clock tonight.

WONDERVIEW 57, BRADLEY 42

Layla Terry had a 18 points and 10 rebounds to lead Wonderview to a first-round victory over Bradley.

Kyah Simmons added 15 points for the Lady Daredevils (24-5). Ainslee Moore had 16 points and 16 rebounds for Bradley (24-9), while Shakrya Harris led the Lady Bears with 19 points.

NEVADA 42, MARVELL-ELAINE 31

Nevada needed a fourth-quarter comeback, outscoring Marvell-Elaine 21-8 in the fourth quarter to advance to the quarterfinal round of the Class 1A boys state tournament at Harrison. Nevada trailed 16-15 at halftime and 23-21 after three quarters before its big rally.

Kavion Coleman had 19 points for Nevada, while Jabaris Gran paced Marvell with 14.

The Blue Jays will play their second-round game tonight, beginning at 8:30 p.m.

CLARENDON 56, EMERSON 47

Clarendon bolted out to a 27-5 lead, then held off the Emerson Pirates to take its first-round victory.

The Pirates cut the Lions' lead to 35-24 at halftime and 46-41 after three quarters, but Clarendon outscored Emerson in the fourth quarter to preserve the win.

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