WAYNESVILLE – East Clinton shot 66 percent from the field and assisted on 21 of 29 made buckets to thwart Cincinnati Gamble Montessori’s comeback bid and emerge with a 70-61 victory Wednesday at the Waynesville Holiday tournament.
The Astros (7-3) will play unbeaten Waynesville at 7:30 p.m. Thursday in the tournament’s championship game.
Lacy Peterman and Paige Lilly led a fast-paced first quarter with 12 and eight points, respectively, to give EC to a 24-20 lead.
Peterman led all scorers with 20 points for the game. Lilly ended with 18. Teammate Kaitlin Durbin joined them in double-figures with 15.
Aigne Clifford led Gamble’s balanced attack with 13 points. Sylvia Parker had 12 while Vivian Parker, Sakiyah Flanigan and Simone Christmon had 11 each.
The paced cooled in a turnover-plagued second period during which the Astros maintained its four-point cushion.
A 10-0 run spanning three minutes of the third quarter moved EC’s advantage from 40-37 to 50-37.
The Gators (7-2) chomped away at that margin for the next six minutes until going up 59-58.
“Basketball is a game of runs and we just needed to stop the run,” EC head coach Jeff Craycraft said. “They created a lot of problems for us defensively. This is the first time we had to go against two post players, and we didn’t do a good job of rotating from our guard spots down.”
Durbin gave the Astros the lead for good, 60-59 with 3:53 left in the contest. Bre Davis hit a long jumper 75 second later and EC then went 5-of-6 from the free throw line in the final 2:19, all while holding the Gators without a field goal, to secure the victory.
“With about two-and-a-half, three minutes to go, we went back to man (defense),” Craycraft said. “The 2-3 gave us time to get some rest and also get them into some bad shot selection. Then they started attacking and we went back to man, and we finished strong in man.”
December 27 2017
@Waynesville Holiday Tournament
East Clinton 70 Gamble Montessori 61
(70) EAST CLINTON (fg-ft-tp) – Peterman 8-3-20, Campbell 3-3-9, Lilly 8-2-18, Durbin 6-3-15, Davis 4-0-8, McCarren 0-0-0, Christian 0-0-0, Hall 0-0-0. Total 29-11-70. 3-point goals: 1 (Peterman). FTM-FTA 11-21, 52 percent.
(61) GAMBLE MONTESSORI (fg-ft-tp) – Flanigan 4-1-11, V. Parker 4-3-11, S. Parker 5-2-12, Clifford 6-1-13, S. Christmon 5-1-11, L. Christmon 0-0-0, Amison 1-0-3. Total 25-8-61. 3-point goals: 3 (S. Flanigan, Amison). FTM-FTA 8-12, 67 percent.
Shawn Robinson covers high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @twinzdad01.