The number seven seed Clay Center Lady Tigers battled the number two seed Eudora Cardinals to 20-21 half time score in Wednesday opener of the Class 4A Girls State Basketball Tournament at the Tony’s Pizza Events Center in Salina. Clay Center went on to upset the two-seed Cardinals 47-42 to advance to the semifinals.
With both teams playing pressure defense, Clay Center’s Clara Edwards was able to break free for 15 first half points in the paint to lead the Tigers. Eudora’s senior twin guards Riley and Reagan Hiebert accounted for all of the Cardinals first half scoring as Reagan had 14 going to the break.
Clay Center had built a six-point lead midway through the first half only to have the Hieberts bang in threes to tie and take the halftime lead. Reaghan Hiebert connected on four of five behind the circle in the opening 16 minutes.
Edwards hit one of two free throws in the third quarter to push the Lady Tigers to a one-point lead and then with 59.1 seconds remaining in the third quarter senior Lexi Liby swished her fourth trey of the game that gave Clay Center a 34-28 lead headed to the fourth.
Liby hit her fifth trey with 5:21 left to give the Tigers a 40-32 lead, which they would not relinquish.
Edwards scored a game high 25 points to lead Clay Center and Liby finished with 15. Reagan Hiebert had 22 points for Eudora. Clay Center shot 53 percent in the second half while Eudora struggled to shoot except from three where they were eight of 19 for the night.
Clay Center 47,
Clay Center 11 9 14 13 – 47
Eudora 9 12 7 14 – 42
Clay Center – Siebold 3, Liby 15, Hammel 4, Edwards 25. Totals: 16 (6) 9-12 47.
Eudora – Re Heibert 22, Ri Hiebert 8, Pierce 2, Schrieiner 8, Durr 2. Totals: 15 (8) 4-7 42.