Balanced production from the starting backcourt of seniors Jesse Love and Casey McCullough helped edge the Mount Pleasant Bluebirds past 2A-North Conference foe Norfork 37-32.
McCullough started the Jan. 10 contest by sliding in the lane for a couple of layups, then Love sank a 3-pointer to sprint the Bluebirds out in front 7-0.
A stickback by senior Spencer Young gave Mount Pleasant a 9-1 lead at the end of one.
After McCullough hit a jumper in the lane with 5:06 to play in the second period that put the Bluebirds up 13-6, the Panthers went on a 9-0 run to grab their first lead of the evening at 15-13.
The Bluebirds closed the frame with a run of their own, 6-0, to take a 19-15 halftime lead.
The lead changed sides six times in a third period that saw Norfork's Sebastian Glowala tie the game at 24-all with 1:43 left in the frame.
Love responded by knocking in his second trey of the night, but the Panthers finished the period with a couple of layups to lead 28-27 after three.
A pair of scores started off the last period for Norfork as they moved in front 32-27.
With a 5-point lead, the Panthers decided to spread the court and run some time off the clock with 4:18 left in the game.
This proved to be a mistake as the Norfork attack stagnated with the Panthers unable to hang onto the ball, giving Mount Pleasant the opportunity to creep back into contention.
The Bluebirds did more than creep as they fired off an 8-0 run to snag the lead back in their favor 35-32 with 1:10 left to play.
Norfork's last chance at a score was snuffed out with 31 seconds on the clock as Casey Acklin drove inside for a layup.
Acklin was denied a hoop as Spencer Young slid across the lane to swat away Acklin's layup attempt.
Love iced the game with a pair of free throws to give the Bluebirds a 37-32 win.
A slow start doomed the Lady Bluebirds in their matchup with the Lady Panthers.
Norfork used a fast start and an advantage in height to hold off Mount Pleasant 41-29.
The good news for the Lady Bluebirds in the first period was Ashley Hames' layup to open the game gave them a 2-0 lead.
The bad news was that would be the only Mount Pleasant score of the period as Norfork ripped off 11 unanswered points to lead 11-2 after one.
The size difference enjoyed by Norfork forced Mount pleasant to foul in the second period as the Lady Panthers sank 11 free throws in the frame.
Leslie Malland (10 points) opened the second period with a layup for Mount Pleasant before Norfork went to wok inside the paint to take a 29-11 halftime lead.
The Lady Bluebirds' offense started to look more crisp in the third period as they outscored Norfork 16-9 in the frame.
Malland started a 8-0 run for the Lady Bluebirds that included a 3-pointer for Corie Smith, Mount Pleasant's first trey of the game.
Smith hit her second 3-ball of the third at the 3:32 mark, but the Lady Bluebirds still trailed 33-23.
Despite being outscored in the period, the Norfork lead stood at 38-27 after three.
Employing the same strategy their boy counterparts would, Norfork spread the court for most of the last period to shorten the game.
This plan worked better for the Lady Panthers as they scored three points in the period, while Mount Pleasant posted two points.
The last score of the game came at the 3:33 point as Norfork took the 41-29 victory over Mount Pleasant.