The Thayer Lady Bobcats are part owners of the South Central Association title thanks to a 58-29 pasting of the Mountain Grove Lady Panthers at home Feb. 26.
The victory over Mountain Grove gives the Lady Cats a 24-1 record overall, and 6-1 in SCA play, good enough for a three-way tie with Ava and Houston for the crown.
Megan Underwood led Thayer with 20 points in the win over the Lady Panthers, with Christa Cox adding nine, while Summer Jones and Sarah Caldwell tossed in four apiece. LaShanda Horton and Kylee McAlmond tallied five each, and Heather Coffel added three, with Valerie Dixon and Tasha Wrenfrow finishing with two apiece.
With the regular season winding down, the Lady Cats hooked up with the Alton Lady Comets for a non-conference matchup Feb. 24, before both squads headed off to the Class 2 District 9 Tournament at Dora that began March 1.
Looking in fine form to start post-season play, Thayer jumped out to a big lead on Alton and cruised to a 64-37 win.
The first period turned out to be a scoring battle between Horton for Thayer, and Savanna Johnson for the Lady Comets.
Horton tossed in 11 of her game-high 13 points in the first period, while Johnson provided all eight of Alton's points in the frame.
The Lady Bobcats also got some help from arc-buster Sarah Caldwell (11 points) in the first as she nailed two of her three treys on the game, helping Thayer to a 22-8 lead after one.
The second period pretty much sealed Alton's fate, with the Lady Comets being shutout from the field and logging just three points from the charity stripe in the period.
Coupled with being held in check on offense, the turnover bug also bit the Lady Comets, turnovers that Thayer cashed into points.
Closing the second on a 19-zip run, the Lady Bobcats held serve 42-11 at halftime.
The Lady Comets did stitch together a pair of nice bursts in the third, the first one a 8-0 run keyed by four points by Ashley Combs (six points).
Back-to-back jumpers from Amanda Rector and Brittany Trevino (three points) closed the frame for Alton, but the Lady Bobcats remained in firm command at 52-23.
Although they outscored Thayer 14-12 in the fourth, the Lady Comets just had too much ground to make up as they fell 64-37.
Christa Cox added to Thayer's balanced scoring attack with nine points, while Summer Jones posted eight points. Underwood and Sarah Prewitt finished with seven each, with Kylee McAlmond and Brittany Allen adding three points apiece. Heather Coffel and Tasha Wrenfrow tallied two each for the Lady Cats.
Savanna Johnson paced Alton with 10 points, while Sarah Rowe and Adrian Johnson finished with four each. Nicole Turner, Jamie Reynolds, Samantha Allred and Christina Aranda posted two points apiece for the Lady Comets.
In junior varsity girls' action, Thayer won a two-period contest 18-8 over the junior varsity Lady Comets.
Alton opened the game with a hoop, and then saw the JV Lady Bobcats score the next eight points, before a hoop at the buzzer ended the first period with Thayer on top 8-4.
Outscoring the JV Lady Comets 10-4 in the last period, the JV Lady Cats wound up on top by 10 points at the game's end.
Tasha Wrenfrow led Thayer with six points, followed by four from Heather Coffel. Brittany Allen added three, with Tiffany Poulette and Cecily Cotham posting two points each. Autumn Forschler rounded out the JV Lady Bobcats' scoring with one point.
Savanna Johnson paced the JV Lady Comets with four, while Amanda Rector and Samantha Allred tallied two points apiece.