PALMYRA, Mo. | The No. 4 seeded Monroe City girls basketball team held the lead after three quarters of play against No. 5 seeded Hallsville in the district quarterfinal at Palmyra High School, but a 26-point fourth quarter outburst by the Indians sunk the Panthers.
Hallsville came through in the clutch to secure a 54-49 victory, which ended Monroe City's season.
The Panthers had fallen behind early and the Indians entered halftime with an 20-19 lead in a defensive-oriented first half.
Monroe City picked up the pace on offense in the third quarter and had a 34-28 lead going into the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter, the Panthers were unable to slow down Hallsville guards Kristen Jones and Avery Oetting, who scored seven and 10 points respectively.
“I thought in the second quarter, we played really good defense to get back in the game,” said Monroe City head coach Cody Leonard. “We had a couple of breakdowns there with their point guard, and of course foul trouble made it a little difficult. They are a good team and we knew it was going to be a tough game.”
Panthers junior forward Riley Quinn led the team with 16 points, and she was 6-for-10 from the free throw line. Junior guard Bailee Hays was second on the team with 11 points.
Oetting led Hallsville with 18 points, while Jones was second with 10 points.
Monroe City finishes the season with a 15-11 record after being eliminated in the district quarterfinals by Hallsville.
“We have a lot to improve on, but I thought we fought hard,” Leonard said.
Before Monday's quarterfinal game, three Monroe City players were named CCC All-Conference selections. Quinn and junior guard Hallie Dyer were second team, and Hays was an honorable mention selection.
Scoring by quarter
MC – 6 | 13 | 15 | 15 – 49
HAL – 11 | 9 | 8 | 26 – 54