Lady ‘Landers fall in heartbreaker in District 1-A title game



In a heavyweight title fight, Cloudland wasn’t able to deliver the knockout punch.

The Lady ‘Landers dropped a heartbreaking 45-42 decision to North Greene in the District 1-A Championship game on Monday night. Cloudland will be the No. 2 seed for the upcoming Region 1-A tournament and will host Washburn on Friday night inside Sonny Smith Gymnasium.

On Monday, the matchup was as tightly contested as the two regular-season games.

After North Greene opened the scoring, Cloudland reeled off an eight-point run – including points from Jasmine Birchfield and Gracie Freeman off steals. A Mandy Benfield bucket gave Cloudland a 10-4 lead after a quarter of play.

The Lady Huskies, however, battled back in the second quarter as they scored 12 of the next 14 points with the lone Cloudland bucket coming from Birchfield. A quick 4-0 run by Birchfield evened the score at 16-16, but North Greene knocked down a trey at the buzzer to take a 19-16 lead at the break.

Intensity amped up in the second half.

The teams traded shots in the first part of the third quarter before a quick NG run gave them a six-point lead. Kenzie BIrchfield and Freeman knocked down 3-pointers late in the quarter to close the gap to 28-26 heading to the fourth quarter.

Neither team was able to get separation in the fourth. Heaven Caraway and J. Birchfield answered North Greene shots, but Cloudland was unable to get back into the lead throughout the quarter.

In the final minute, the Lady ‘Landers were able to trim the deficit to one-point but North Greene hit a pair of free throws to secure the win.

J. Birchfield led the way with 15 points, while Freeman scored 14 points. Benfield tallied five points in the game.

Brooklyn Savage led North Greene with 15 points.

For more photos, click here.

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