Pilant, Estep Hit for Double Doubles in Win
The Magnolia Blue Eagles strapped down their chin-straps and went to work shutting down the talented Ritchie County Rebels, while Kyndra Pilant and Holland Estep each recorded double-doubles to lead Magnolia to a convincing 51-33 win Jan. 9 inside MHS Gymnasium.
The Blue Eagle defense held Ritchie to only 6-points in the opening period, and 10-points in the second period as Audrey Cross, Abby Clegg, Lara Ann Smith, Raegan Hale, Lenieca Grimm and Kyndra Pilant were all over the floor in keeping the Rebels at bay. In the meantime, Pilant was showcasing her offensive and defensive almost every play to help Magnolia take a 22-16 half-time lead.
In the third period, Cross made a steal, flipped it to Hale who dished it to Pilant for 2-points to start the second half. The Blue Eagle defense put the hammer-down, and kept Ritchie off the board for the first 4-minutes, while building a 28-17 advantage after a Ritchie County free throw.
Pilant added a free throw, and Estep sank a deuce thanks to a long pass by Cross before the Rebels finally sank a 2-pointer 6-minutes into the third period. Pilant scored the Eagles final 4-points of the period, including a pair of free-throws, while the Rebels sank their second deuce of the period off the glass at the 1-minute mark, with Magnolia holding on to a 35-21 lead with one period remaining.
Rebekah Rupert opened the scoring with a free throw, but Pilant put back her-own miss and scored a nifty shack-and-bake drive that got the Blue Eagle bench on their feet.
Ritchie added another freebie, but just as quick Pilant tossed a long full court pass to Cross that also got the MHS bench off their feet, but the Rebels Ashley Davis silenced the crown for a moment with a long bonus bomb to stop the bleeding.
Each team traded a pair of baskets with Magnolia calling a time-out with 4:07 left in the final period of play after turning the ball over with a turnover. The Rebels missed three straight freebies , while Pilant swished a pair at the 3-minute mark.
The Lady Rebels would not fold so quickly scored on a an easy in-bounds pass under their bucket, and later another free throw, before Estep sank her final 2-baskets off nice assists by Grimm to end the game.
Pilant and Estep each had a double-double, but it was the out-standing defense by a flock of Blue Eagles that helped them achieve it. Grimm followed with 6-points, including a bonus bomb, while Clegg netted a triple and Cross a deuce for all the scoring.
Davis paced the Lady Rebels with 19-points, that included 4-baskets from beyond the arch.