LA MONTE — The La Monte Lady Vikings basketball team snapped a three-year Kaysinger Conference losing streak on Jan. 8 with a 37-15 win over Lincoln.
On Friday night, the Lady Vikings won two Kaysinger games in a season for the first time since the 2007-08 season, beating Smithton 48-47.
“Our goal coming in was we wanted a Kaysinger victory,” La Monte coach John Curry said. “That’s one of the things we had on our list. We’re getting close to some of our other goals, too.”
The game wasn’t decided until the final seconds. The Tigers climbed within one point twice. Mariah Cairer’s putback made the score 44-43, and Bethany Freel’s driving layup made it 48-47 near the
La Monte (8-7, 2-4) gave them chances to win, going 0 for 4 from the free-throw line in the final 33.7 seconds.
Twice, the Tigers (4-13, 1-6) had a chance to take the lead in the final minute. Cairer was open underneath the basket, but the throw inside went out of bounds.
With 20.9 seconds left, Freel missed a 3-pointer, and the Tigers appeared to have the rebound. However, officials said that the ball rolled out of bounds off a Smithton player.
“We’re pretty evenly matched,” Smithton coach Lonny Price said. “We knew it’d be a tough game. We knew it’d come down to the wire. Gave ourselves a chance at the end. I’m a little disappointed but our season’s kind of been like that.”
Curry said, “For as young as we are, we’re actually doing fairly well. Some of these girls have never been on a winning team. They really don’t understand how to win.”
With the Tigers using a zone defense for most of the game, Curry gave his shooters the green light, and they responded with nine 3-pointers, including five by Vada DeMotte, who led the Lady Vikings with 15 points. Madison Harris made two 3s and finished with 12. Cathy Butts added 12.
The Tigers’ zone defense hindered La Monte’s top player, Butts, who never found a rhythm on offense.
While La Monte was effective from outside, Smithton worked the ball inside to Cairer, who scored a game-high 18 points. Kaley Snapp had a triple-double with 11 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists.
La Monte struggled from the field most of the night, going 9 for 27 from behind the arc. The Lady Vikings went 10 of 31 from 2-point range.
Smithton made 5 of 6 shots from inside the arc to lead 11-10 after one quarter. The Lady Vikings stayed close with a 3-pointer by DeMotte and a 3-point play by Madison Harris.
La Monte made five 3-pointers in the second, but Snapp made a
3-pointer and Cairer had four points to keep the game close. La Monte led 28-25 at halftime.
Three more 3-pointers by La Monte helped it extend its lead to 41-37 by the start of the fourth.
La Monte vs. Miami
7:30 p.m. Monday at Leeton tourney
Smithton vs. Chilhowee
6 p.m. Monday at Leeton tourney