HANNIBAL | With a second half surge, the Palmyra girls basketball team defeated Hannibal 57-32 at Korf Gymnasium on Tuesday.
It was a low-scoring first half, with both teams unable to score for the first four and a half minutes of the second quarter. After a 3-pointer from Hannibal guard Emma Deien, the Panthers went on a 13-1 run to close out the first half with a 24-10 lead.
“Offensively, we were kind of impatient for most of the (first) half,” said Palmyra head coach Chris Parsons. “Defensively, we held them to 10 points, so I was pretty proud of the defense. Right before the end of the half, we kind of went big with Eme Ridout and Rylie McKinney underneath. They had a huge end of the first half and came out in the second half the same way.”
The Panthers started the third quarter with a 7-0 run and would outscore the Pirates 19-8 in the quarter. Both teams scored 14 points apiece in the fourth quarter, with the game's outcome no longer in doubt.
Parsons said his team was more patient on offense in the second half.
“We ran the offense, we knew we had a size advantage inside and we knew our big players were playing big tonight,” Parsons said. “We needed to do that, so on the offensive end that helped us a ton. Defensively, I thought we did a good job on the boards in the second half. I thought McKinney and Ridout were a huge part of that.”
Hannibal head coach Evan Cerven said his team is going to learn from Tuesday's loss and look to rebound with two games scheduled later this week.
“That's a game that we are going to keep on the schedule, just because of what Palmyra has built up over there with their ladies basketball program,” Cerven said. “It's a great game for us to get us ready for districts and the team showed us how to play hard and execute on both sides of the floor.”
Cerven said his team needs to improve on early defense and will work on it in practice.
“I think a lot of times, especially in the post, we were caught behind because for whatever reason, we were kind of falling asleep in the lane,” Cerven said. “The next thing we knew, we were pinned underneath the basket and it was an easy catch, turn and score. We are going to have to work on getting our feet right, getting physical in the paint and getting more ball pressure from our guards, so we're not giving up easy passes directly to the lane.”
McKinney led the Panthers with 14 points, and Ridout was second with 13 points. Senior Bailey Lovelace was third with nine points.
Hannibal center Bella Falconer and Deien tied for the team lead with nine points.
The Pirates are now 14-8, while the Panthers are now 20-3 after Tuesday's game.
Up next – Hannibal will host Marshall on Thursday at 6 p.m. Palmyra will host Highland on Friday at 6 p.m.
Scoring by quarter
HAN – 6 | 4 | 8 | 14 – 32
PAL – 11 | 13 | 19 | 14 – 57