Mar 11 2009
With a trip to the NJCAA National Tournament in the balance, the Seward County Lady Saints and the Hutchinson Lady Blue Dragons hit the court Monday night at Koch Arena in Wichita in their third matchup of the season. In both teams conference opener in January, the Lady Saints flew out to a 24 point halftime lead and won the game by 18 but in the second matchup between the two, Hutchinson turned the table on the Lady Saints and beat Seward County 66-64 in the Green House. With Seward having won nine straight and Hutch having won 13 of their last 14, Monday night’s championship game was sure to be one to remember. That it was, but defiantly not a good one to remember, especially for Lady Saints fans. Seward County came out of the gate strong taking to a 12-7 lead early but Hutchinson came roaring back on a 9-0 run to take a 16-12 lead with just under nine minutes remaining in the first half. Seward cut the Hutch lead to 16-15 with 7:57 remaining in the first half but were not able to score again in the first period and faced a 28-15 deficit at half. The Lady Saints shot just 5 for 25 in the first half and outside of Rachel Barnes, saw a 2 for 22 shooting mark. Seward came out of the break revitalized and quickly cut the Hutchinson lead down to four points at 32-28 but the Lady Dragons would combine a pair of three balls and a jumper to build their advantage back to 12 at 40-28. The teams traded baskets before Seward put the defensive clamps on and held Hutch scoreless for over four and a half minutes to climb back into the game at 46-41. With 1:29 left to play, Hutch got a steal and a layup to go ahead by six but Megan Lassley was able to bank in a three-pointer and after a Lady Dragons free-throw and a Seward bucket the lead was just two. One of the Lady Dragons best free-throw shooters Brittany Chamberlain clanked the front end of her one and one’s on back to back possessions to give Seward a chance, down by two, with 15 seconds to play but they failed to get a shot off and fell 53-51. The Lady Saints held Hutch to a season low 53 points but were able to shoot just 29.5% during the game. Barnes finished with a game high 18 to go along with 7 steals and 4 rebounds while Amanda Pierson finished with 13 points and 10 rebounds. After the game, Pierson, Barnes, and Lassley were all named to the Region VI All-Tournament Team for their performances on the weekend. The loss drops the Lady Saints to 28-6 to finish the season.