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GIRLS HOOPS: Ray-Pec holds off Carthage for road win

SoMo Sports staff reports

CARTHAGE, Mo. — Raymore-Peculiar closed the first half on a surge and held off Carthage in the second half en route to a 49-42 win on Thursday.

Ray-Pec took a nine-point lead into the second half before Carthage (3-5) outscored the Panthers 14-5 in the third period to tie the game heading into the final eight minutes of play. Ray-Pec took the momentum early in the fourth quarter and never gave it back.

“The girls battled hard tonight, there’s no questioning our effort against a talented Ray-Pec team,” Carthage coach Scott Moore said to SoMo Sports. “If a few more of our shots roll in, instead of just roll out, that game has a different ending.”

“Outside of a three-minute stretch to end the first half where Ray-Pec went on a 10-0 run, we outplayed them the other 29 minutes. The lesson we need to learn from this is that it takes a full 32 minutes to beat a good team.”

Ray-Pec closed the first quarter on a 9-5 run, which included a 3-pointer from Sam Larkins with 15 seconds left, to build a 15-10 lead heading into the second period.

Carthage took the momentum early in the second period after starting the quarter on an 8-2 run to grab the lead from the Panthers. 

Jaidyn Brunnert connected from the wing on the perimeter to start the quarter, while Lauren Choate added a pair of free throws before knocking down a deep 3-ball from the top of the key to put Carthage in front 18-17 with 3:36 left in the half.

Ray-Pec immediately took the advantage back and closed the first half on an 11-1 run to go into the intermission with a 28-19 cushion.

Sarai Clark contributed two field goals in the run, while Peyton Johnson knocked down a 3-pointer. Sophie Terry and Hayden Kurtz added buckets as well.

The Tigers spent the third quarter clawing back against the Panthers, outscoring Ray-Pec 14-5 out of the halftime break.

After Terry knocked down a 3-ball to start the second half, Lexa Younblood matched with a 3-pointer from the wing before Maggie Boyd connected from the perimeter to trim the CHS deficit to 31-26.

Clark scored on the drive for the Panthers before Carthage closed the third quarter making 7-of-8 free throws, which included Youngblood making 2 of 2 with five seconds left to tie the game at 33-all with one quarter to play.

Ray-Pec started the final eight minutes of play with a 3-pointer from Johnson before Clark scored inside and drew contact for a three-point play and a 39-33 lead. 

Boyd knocked down a runner for the Tigers before the Panthers got a baseline jumper from Johnson and an inside bucket by Hayden Kurtz to push the lead back out to 43-35.

Carthage cut the lead to five, 47-42, on a jumper from Brunnert off the assist by Choate with just over a minute to play, but that would be as close to the lead as the Tigers would get before the final horn.

Terry led Ray-Pec with 18 points, while Clark finished right behind with 15 points. Johnson sank two 3-pointers and finished with eight points.

Choate and Youngblood each knocked down a pair of 3-pointers and led Carthage in scoring with 16 points and 15 points, respectively. 

Lauren Choate and Lexa Youngblood were the offensive sparks tonight for us,” Moore added. “They did a great job of attacking the basket to score or draw fouls. Each of them shot 10 free throws with the added benefit of getting a couple of Panther players in foul trouble.”

Carthage takes part in the Pink & White Invitational basketball tournament hosted by Kickapoo from Dec. 27-30.


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