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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Lady Pirates take round two

Thursday, December 15, 2011

There's no doubt that winning any kind of tournament title is a special occasion.

But for the Calico Rock Lady Pirates, this one had to be way-off-the-charts special.

Not only did the Lady Pirates win their first-ever Lyon College High School Tournament championship Dec. 10 with a 44-42 win over their neighbors from just across the county line, Mountain View, but Calico Rock also got a bit of revenge in the process.

The Class 3A defending state champs from Mountain View topped Calico Rock, the defending Class 1A state champion, in the finals of the Lyon College Tourney last year, and the Lady Yellowjackets were also responsible for handing the Lady Pirates their first loss of this season, a couple of weeks ago in the Highland Classic.

But, as they say, turnabout is fair play and, when this game ended, Mountain View (10-1) had its first loss of the season, courtesy of Calico Rock (15-2).

But it wasn't an easy victory, by any stretch.

The Lady Pirates trailed for a big part of the game and, after leading 1-0 early in the first, Calico Rock played from behind until late in the fourth.

Down 33-29 with 3:40 left in the contest, the Lady Pirates said enough is enough.

Tourney MVP Emily Johnson (18 points) hit a bucket in the lane, followed by a 3-ball from Savannah Skidmore (six points) that gave Calico Rock a 34-33 lead.

Johnson added another deuce and Brooke McCurley (eight points) nailed a pair of technical foul free throws to extend the Lady Pirates in front 38-33.

Mountain View kept punching back and pulled within one point, 41-40, on a pair of Markie Seay free throws with 22 ticks left.

But Calico Rock was also dead-on from the charity stripe and Karli Gillihan (six points) hit three-out-of-four in the last 18 seconds of play to send Calico Rock to a hard-earned 44-42 win.

The Lady Yellowjackets pretty much controlled the first half of play, grabbing an 11-8 lead after one.

Michelle Dobbins knocked down a pair of 3-pointers early in the second to give Mountain View a 17-10 advantage.

Calico Rock got only two field goals in the second period -- a jumper by Johnson and a layup from Rachel Bevill -- and was in a 21-14 hole at intermission.

That hole got even deeper early in the third as Jessica Flannery hit a bucket and Kelsey Gomez hit a 3, pushing Mountain View in front 26-14.

Calico Rock shook off its sluggishness and closed the third on a big 8-0 run that narrowed the gap to 30-24, Mountain View, after three.

Then midway into the final frame, the Lady Pirates made one last push and that turned out to be enough in this battle of defending state champions.

Sloan Lively finished with three points for Calico Rock.

Seay paced Mountain View with 11 points.

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