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Down and out
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Jeffery Simmons photo Bri Young scored 11 points in Friday's loss.

A valiant effort to knock off one of the top teams in District 6-AAA came up short Friday night.
The Lady Pioneers came close many times in the second half, but never got over the hump in a 76-60 loss to Stone Memorial.

“The girls played hard. They made the right passes offensively and we switched up things defensively,” said coach Shea Panter. “We were right there in the third quarter, but they pulled away.”

After trailing at halftime 36-26, Warren County opened the second half with an 8-0 run. By the time Emily Mikkola drilled a 3-pointer from the right wing, Stone Memorial had a fight on its hands.

The Lady Panthers responded with a 10-0 run of their own, but Megan Patch made sure the Lady Pioneers stayed within shouting distance with back-to-back deep 3-pointers.

Down 50-42 entering the final quarter, Warren County tried to mount a final rally. Bri Young sent a jolt through the Lady Pioneers when she worked a perfect give-and-go, finishing the play with a sprawling layup sunk as she fell to the floor. Tyra Wright hit a jumper seconds later, drawing the Lady Pioneers within five at 52-47 with 6:02 to play.

It was as close as the Lady Pioneers would get.

Tessa Miller, who finished with 17 points for Stone Memorial, put her team ahead by double figures with a three-point play. The Lady Panther lead would never again sink below double digits. Alex Eldridge led all scored with 20 points, 10 in the fourth quarter.

Coach Panter thought the strong performance bodes well for her team. “We’re growing. We played better than the last time we faced them. I can see the team starting to gel and it’s the right time to come together," said Panter.

Patch continued her barrage of outside shooting by connecting on six 3-pointers en route to 18 points. Patch hit five outside shots in Tuesday’s loss to White County.

Rounding out the Lady Pioneer scoring was Wright with 13, Young with 11, Grace Rains with 7, Callie Cathcart with 5, Mikkola with 3, Rhealee Johnson with 2 and Caylie Sherrill with 1.