Having the home court advantage for Class 3, District 8, has to be the kind of good fortune Montgomery County varsity girls basketball coach Joe Basinger is hoping to cash in on as early and often as possible, but this could easily be one of those things that's easier said than done.
There's no denying that the Lady Wildcats, 14-12 overall, represented themselves and their school with pride in the Eastern Missouri Conference this season. But, not only does Hermann, 21-4 overall, have to be the favorite to win this district, Bowling Green, 15-9 overall, could also create some real matchup problems for any team.
Beyond all of that Montgomery County began the postseason last Saturday against Winfield and were propelled by the 12 points Anna Henke scored on a pair of triples and a trio of doubles to dominate this contest from start to finish and come out on top 62-22. The Lady Wildcats staked their claim to this game early by claiming the opening session 20-2, and then just to make sure the Lady Warriors were on the same page the home team swiped the second quarter 16-9 to head into the break leading 36-11.
While Haeley Johnson's 10 points didn't hurt, and neither did the nine points each added by Hannah Prior and Taylor Flake, what came next was a 22-7 statement in the third that upped Montgomery County's lead to 58-18, and, for all intents and purposes, put things out of reach for Winfield.
What made up this victory for the Lady Wildcats were many things, which included going 10-for-12 from the charity stripe with 20 two-pointers and four three-pointers.
Winfield's cause was best taken up by Lei Ford with eight points and scoring five each were Grace Williams and Josie Bauer. Overall the Lady Warriors went 0-for-5 from the free throw line and made 10 field goals. This included two from behind the three-point line.
In the other games from this district last Saturday Hermann's Hannah Gross had a 19-point showing and Allison Stiers managed 10 points as they guided their team past Wright City 79-29. Christian also lost 40-23 to Bowling Green thanks to 15 points by Gabi Deters.
The Lady Wildcats next played Tuesday at 6 p.m. against top-seeded Lutheran St. Charles, which drew a bye for round one. The other semifinal for this district is also Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. and features Hermann vs. Bowling Green. The title game will then take place Friday at 5:30 p.m.