A game-high 17 points from Melinda Guffey helped pave the way for the Lady Longhorns' 57-43 opening round win over the Concord Lady Pirates in the Class A Region 2 Tournament at Rural Special High School in Fox Feb. 26.
Guffey tossed in seven straight points, part of an 11-zip Viola run, late in the second period to keep Concord at bay.
Taking a 12-8 lead into the second period, the Lady Horns saw Concord close ground with seven unanswered points to open the frame.
Responding with a burst of their own, Viola's Teegan Baumunk (four points) stuck back a missed shot, followed by Guffey's seven-point outburst, and followed up with a pair of free throws by All-Regional performer Lindsey Barker (13 points), to give the Lady Longhorns a 22-17 lead at the half.
By the time the third period ended, the Lady Horns had extended their lead to 10, at 36-26.
Much as they were for most of the game, ballhandling miscues and turnovers hampered any attempt by the Lady Pirates to make a serious run at Viola, with the Lady Longhorns outscoring Concord 21-17 in the fourth to post the win.
Kyla Batterton, a member of the All-Regional Team, tallied 10 points for Viola, while Chelsea Taylor added six, and Jamie Daily four. Halimeh Amer and Cayla Cotter finished with two points each.
The Lady Longhorns' (21-9) regional run came up one game short of a berth in the state tournament with a tight 38-36 loss to the Sulphur Rock Lady Wildcats in semi-final play Feb. 27.