East Prairie Hornets girls basketball team celebrates successful season

By Kendra Hennis 
The seventh grade Lady Hornets took on the Sullivan team on April 26, taking their first loss of the season 45-15. Amaryiah Banda led the Hornets with six points, Phoebe Wilkins contributed four, Reese Davis added three, and Lilly Kurtz chipped in two points. 

Following the game, Coach Beth Pugh said, “The seventh grade had a tough game against a very talented Sullivan team. We held our own for most of the first quarter, but couldn’t keep up with the quick and skilled Sullivan players. I think this gave the girls a goal to work for in the off season.” 

She then noted that, “the seventh grade ended the season with a 9-1 record and were conference champs with a record of 7-0. Coach Brewer and I are very proud of these girls. The seventh grade has improved a lot since the beginning of the season. They work hard and play well together.”

In a later match, the eighth grade team were also defeated by a tough Sullivan team, with a 23-22 final score. Ava Boyer led the Lady Hornets with 11 points, Lia Patterson contributed six, Emily Veach chipped in four, and Olivia Wallace added one.  

After the game, Coach Pugh said, “The eighth grade had a tough game against Sullivan. We started out really strong. We transitioned up the court really well. Sullivan had to change their defense, because we were getting to the basket easily. When Sullivan changed to a zone we were not able to get the shots that we wanted and the outside shots were not falling as well. We didn’t come out ready to play in the third quarter and Sullivan got some easy baskets and got back into the game. We tied it up in regulation but had some lapses in defense in the overtime. This was a very intense game.The girls played hard and hustled after every loose ball.” 

Pugh additionally noted that, “The Sullivan basketball girls only participated in basketball. While our girls were practicing and playing both basketball and track and field, Sullivan was able to concentrate on basketball. Coach Brewer and I are very proud of our girls for playing both sports and keeping up their grades. It was not the perfect situation, but we did not want the girls to have to make a choice between two sports that they enjoy. The girls never complained during the season.” 

On the season, Coach Pugh said, “the eighth grade ended the season 6-1 in the conference losing to Arcola by one point and 8-2 overall. The two losses that the eighth grade had were both by one point. The eighth grade is a very competitive team, never giving up and playing to the buser. The girls play well together and have a lot of potential. I know that the High School coaches, Coach Quick, Coach Rosenbaum, and Coach Kohlbecker are looking forward to working with these girls. It has been my pleasure to coach such girls. Good luck in your future.”

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