By Frank Finley
The Lady Eagles basketball team traveled to Sedalia Wednesday night to face Butler (20-8) in a state sectional match-up for a spot in final four championship play. Butler earned their way to the game after defeating perennial basketball power, El Dorado Springs, in the Class 3 District 10 final 50-46.
Southern Boone came in hot in the first quarter using defensive pressure to build a 10-point lead at one point. The Bears clawed their way back to within five points at the half with the Eagles leading 30-25.
The match remained close with the Eagles up by eight, 44-36 at the end of the 3rd period.
That’s when Southern Boone took flight. Head Coach Damon Wren preaches defense to his team and the Eagles typically have a strong 4th quarter.
Butler suffered full-pressure and double-team defense that forced rushed passes and turnovers. Junior Trinity Schupp put the game on ice going 6-6 at the free-throw line at the shallow end of the 4th period. The Eagles took control of the game outscoring Butler 20-5 in the final frame and flew away with a 64-41 victory.
The next for for the Eagles comes from Strafford (27-3), another power-house team from southwest Missouri. The game is slotted for 6:00 p.m. at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar. Southern Boone has faced them several times in past state tournaments. Wren says the Lady Indians will present a challenge but has confidence in his team.
“Strafford is good team, they’re tough. But they haven’t played us yet.”