The Cossatot River Lady Eagles needed one win in the 2A South Regional Tournament in Junction City last week to advance to the state tournament. The Lady Eagles punched their ticket to state with a 55-33 win over Parker’s Chapel on Wednesday, February 20th.
The Lady Eagles raced to a 26-15 halftime lead and never looked back to post the 22 point victory. Kayla Richardson led the Lady Eagles with 16 points. Kaylin McKee pitched in 13, and Ashlen Gonzalez added 12. Cossatot River’s girls drew the home team at Junction City in Friday night’s semifinals. The Lady Dragons defeated Cossatot River 51-47.
The Lady Eagles jumped out to a 7-1 lead early, and led 12-11 after the opening quarter. The turning point in the game came when Ashlen Gonzalez hit a driving lay-up at the 5:24 mark of the second quarter that would have extended the Lady Eagles lead to five. However, Gonzalez was whistled for a questionable charging foul, wiping off the bucket. That was Ashlen’s third foul of the contest, and she had to sit on the bench for the remainder of the first half.
Junction City took advantage of the senior leader’s absence to go on a 14-4 run to end the half taking a 27-20 lead into the locker room. Kayla Richardson hit a three point basket midway through the third quarter to tie the game at 39, but the Lady Dragons regained the lead 36-33 at the end of the third.
Jade Richardson knocked down a trey to tie the game at 47 with 25 seconds to play. But Gonzalez fouled out, and the Lady Dragons hit their free throws to pull out the 51-47 victory to send the Lady Eagles to Saturday’s third place consolation game against Murfreesboro. Saturday’s third place contest was the fourth meeting this year between the Lady Eagles and the Lady Rattlers.
After defeating Murfreesboro 74-72 in the finals of the conference tournament at Horatio on February 16th, the Lady Eagles fell to the Lady Rattlers 63-57 Saturday at Junction City.
In a see-saw first half Saturday, Cossatot River led 18-16 after the first quarter, but trailed Mufreesboro 32-29 at the intermission. Neither team could pull away, as the biggest lead for either squad in the first half was five points.
Late in the first half, Lady Eagles Coach Tyler Timms was assessed a technical foul. That seemed to fire up the Lady Eagles as they went on an 11-2 run to open up the third quarter to take a 40-34 lead. But the Lady Rattlers battled back to tie the game at 40 at the end of the third quarter.
Murfreesboro’s Rhealee Campbell hit back-to-back three pointers to give the Lady Rattlers a 56-49 lead. Jordae Hunter sank five of six free throws in the final minute to seal the deal as Murfreesboro won the third place consolation game Saturday 63-57.
Gonzalez and Jade Richardson had five points each in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough as Cossatot River and Murfreesboro have split four contests during the 2018-2019 season.
The Lady Eagles, now 25-11 on the season, advanced to the Class 2A State Tournament in Carlisle. As the number four seed from the 2A South Regional Tournament, the Lady Eagles drew the number one seed from the 2A Central Regional Tournament in first round action Tuesday, February 26th at the state tournament at Carlisle High School.
Picture provided by Coach Tyler Timms