By Kai Raymer (for OzarksSportsZone.com)
Finally, each program faces the dreaded rebuilding season.
Many thought Rolla would step into that state of affairs this season after the Girl Bulldogs graduated a senior class that featured three gamers who suited up on the collegiate stage.
Rolla coach Charlie Parker did not see it that means.
“Lots of people thought we had been going to go away as a result of we misplaced a lot,” Parker stated. “From what I noticed of this group final summer season and the best way we performed protection, pushed the ball, shot and trusted one another, I can see that this group is pretty much as good as any group I’ve coached.”
The brand new-look Girl Bulldogs proceed to show their coach proper.
Rolla held off Strafford for a hard-fought 52-51 win within the Girl Cat Basic championship recreation Friday night time at Logan-Rogersville Excessive College.
In a matchup of state-ranked groups, Class 5 Rolla used a run to take the lead late within the fourth quarter and later survived as Strafford missed a possible game-winner on the buzzer.
Junior guard Resa Martin led a balanced Rolla squad with 14 factors. 5 Girl Bulldogs scored seven or extra factors.
“Being a senior and third yr within the championship recreation on this match, it is an enormous accomplishment to come back out with a win,” stated Rolla senior Jessica Pritchett, who had eight factors. “It is my final experience, so I really feel actually good.”
At 14-3 total, the Girl Bulldogs (ranked No. 6 within the Missouri Basketball Coaches Affiliation Class 5 state ballot) are on tempo for his or her fourth 20-win season in 5 years.
“You come right here and play a staff that is historically robust and has a very good tradition like Strafford, for those who beat them, you have to earn it,” Parker stated. “It solely helps us down the highway.”
Rolla is doing it with a brand new fashion – much less dimension and methodical play, extra guards and a better tempo – however their profitable requirements haven’t diminished.
“Simply being part of this program usually has been a terrific expertise for me,” stated junior guard Corey Alcorn, who transferred from close by St. James Excessive College. “Competitors is at a really excessive stage. Strafford is a very good staff. It was nice to have the ability to come collectively as a staff and stroll away with this win.”
Friday marked the third consecutive season that Rolla and Strafford have met within the finals of the Girl Cat Basic.
The deciding rubber match was the very best of two colleges separated by 100 miles alongside Interstate 44.
Alcorn’s three-point play with 1:43 left gave Rolla a 52-47 lead. He shouted emphatically after the sport, which grew to become well-known amongst his teammates.
“Each time Corey is available in and he finishes and I see him laying on the ground and the whistle blows, I simply know (that scream) is coming,” Pritchett stated. “It is a terrific flexibility. I simply know, ‘Oh my god, right here we go. We’re getting ready to run.” It is actually empowering.”
Alcorn embraces his position and does not draw back from displaying his feelings on the sphere.
“I like to be admired. That is how I play – it makes me play higher,” stated Alcorn, who completed with 12 factors. “And I like to shock my teammates once they play. “I feel the depth is what makes the sport enjoyable.”
Alcorn’s free throw later within the three-point play turned out to be the distinction within the recreation.
Strafford had a few pictures to take the lead within the closing seconds — thanks partly to a Rolla turnover — however a floater within the lane went off the mark as time expired.
“It was a decent recreation,” Pritchett stated. “Each time I play them, I am able to go after it and get a win. It is undoubtedly a rivalry as a result of as a smaller faculty they do not have a lot to lose. “Additionally, Strafford is a good program for them, so it feels good to come back all the way down to their turf and win.”
Freshman guard Elsie Larsen led Strafford (14-4 total, Class 3 No. 1 MBCA) with 12 factors. The Girl Indians entered Friday night time’s recreation driving a seven-game profitable streak.
“I instructed my women that had been there on the finish, ‘Hey, in the event that they shoot, do not go down since you performed your coronary heart out tonight,'” Parker stated.
Rolla (14-4 total) returns to convention motion on Monday night time with a go to to Glendale.
Strafford returns to motion Monday night time internet hosting Willow Springs. The Girl Indians will host No. 6 No. 3 Republic at residence on Friday, Jan. 27.
Rolla 52, Strafford 51
Strafford 10 13 14 14 — 51
Roll 10 13 15 14 — 52
Strafford (14-4 total) – Elsie Larsen 12, Laney Humble 11, Sophia Freking 10, Lauren Jones 8, Brooklyn Adney 6, Zoe Allison 4
Rolla (14-3 total) – Resa Martin 14, Corey Alkon 12, Jessica Pritchett 8, Willow Gideon 8, Religion Coates 7, Brooke Blackman 3