Grayson County’s middle school girls played a pair of games at home last Tuesday, hosting the Muhlenberg North Lady Stars.
In the first game, the seventh-grade girls lost for just the second time all season, with both of those losses coming against the Stars. Muhlenberg got the better of them this time by a 33-28 score. With the loss, the seventh-grade girls fall to 14-2 on the season.
In the second game, the eighth-grade girls got a big measure of revenge in beating the Stars, a team that had beaten them in an earlier meeting in Powderly. The Lady Cougars, behind Grace White’s huge night. blasted the visitors 54-33 to move to 12-2 for the season.
Before the game, North’s coach told the Cougar coaching staff that people in Muhlenberg County referred to the Lady Cougars’ Grace White as, “Amazing Grace.”
And on this night, she was truly amazing, recording a double-double with 32 points (a personal best), and 15 rebounds. She also led the team with seven steals and added an assist for good measure.
In the previous game, the Lady Cougars had opened up a big lead, only to see the Stars come back to steal the game at the end.
This time would be different, as the Lady Cougars raced out to a big lead in the first period, held on to it through three quarters, then blew it open in the fourth period.
Grayson County opened the game on a 10-0 run, six of them coming from White, before the Stars got on the board with a 10-footer by Bailee Harney at the 3:47 mark.
A three-pointer by Madison Simms with 52 seconds left in the period cut the margin to just four points, 14-10, but White scored the final five points of the period to give Grayson County a nine-point advantage, 19-10, heading into the second quarter.
The Lady Cougars opened the second period on a 7-1 run to take their largest lead of the first half, 15 points at 26-11 at the 4:05 mark. They led by 10 points, 29-19 at the half.
Another Simms three-pointer with 1:14 left in the third quarter made it a six-point game, 36-30, but the Lady Cougars closed out the period on a 5-1 run to push the lead back to 10 points, 41-31.
After Leslie Swafford scored off a nice assist from White to open the third-quarter scoring, Harney hit a lay-up with 3:35 left to make it a 10-point game again at 43-33. Those would be North’s final points of the evening. White scored the next seven points to make it 50-33 with 1:05 left to play. Kennedi Cave and Taylor Glenn closed out the scoring to give the Lady Cougars the big win.
Simms led the North Stars with 16 points, and Harney added 11.
Allie Horton had a fine night for Grayson County, scoring eight points and leading the team with six assists. She added three steals and a rebound for her night’s work. Hannah Salsman came off the bench to toss in six points for the Lady Cougars. Four players, Cave, Swafford, Glenn and Shannon Smith had two points apiece to close out the scoring.
The seventh-grade girls came into this game with a 14-1 record, with their only loss coming at North back in October. They were hoping to turn the tables on the Stars this time, and they had their chances at the end, but could not get over the hump.
Neither team could get much done in the first period, which ended with the Lady Cougars holding a 4-2 lead.
Things weren’t much warmer in the second period, but North scored the first six points to lead 8-4 with 2:32 left.
Grace Gorby ended the Muhlenberg run with a lay-in with 1:12 left to cut the lead to two points, but North’s Bailee Harney scored with 26 seconds left to make the halftime score 10-6 in favor of the Stars.
Harney scored again opening the third quarter to give the Stars their largest lead of the night, six points at 12-6, but Hannah Salsman hit a three-pointer at the 5:25 mark to pull her team to within three at 12-9.
Kaylee Masden hit a lay-up with 3:26 left to pull the Lady Cougars to within a point of the lead at 12-11, but North scored the next four points to lead by five, 16-11 with 1:47 left in the period.
Another Masden lay-up and 2-of-4 free throws from Salsman made it a one-point game again, 16-15 with 44 seconds left. North’s Raegan Blackburn hit 1-of-2 at the line with 30 seconds left to make it 17-15, before Salsman closed out the scoring with two free throws to tie the game 17-17 heading into the fourth quarter.
A 6-2 North run opening the final period gave the Stars a four-point lead, 23-19 at the 4:01 mark. A 15-foot jumper by Mackenzie Edwards with 2:10 left brought Grayson County to within a point of the lead, 25-24, but that would be as close as they would get.
Edwards hit on another jumper with 49 seconds left to make it 29-27, but the Stars closed out the game on a 4-1 run to nail down the win.
Harney led all scorers in the game with 16 points, and Blackburn added 13.
Edwards led the Lady Cougars in scoring with 12 points, 10 of them coming in the exciting fourth quarter. Edwards also pulled down nine rebounds and added an assist and two steals for her night’s work.
Salsman finished with nine points and led the team on the boards with 11 rebounds. She added three steals and an assist. Masden finished with four points, while Gorby had three to close out the scoring.