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BY MATT KING AND
MICHAEL BOYD JR.
BETTER NEWSPAPERS, INC.
STE. GENEVIEVE, Mo. — Chloe Staffen scored a career- and game-high 25 points on the Peggy J. Johnson Memorial Gymnasium floor, but the Black Knights spoiled all her fun.
Ste. Genevieve cut its 16-point debt down to seven twice in the final quarter, but could not finish the rally against Farmington at SGHS on a rare Friday contest for high school girls’ basketball.
The host Dragons suffered their fourth loss in five games, including three straight, falling to the Knights 50-39 during large-schools divisional action of the Mineral Area Activities Association Conference.
On a key statistical note, the Knights (12-4, 3-1 MAAA), who played hold-the-ball all second half, hit their free throws, especially in the second half, going 18 for 23 from the charity stripe — 14 made in the fourth quarter alone. Ste. Genevieve was only 7 for 12 from it.
Ste. Genevieve (7-8, 1-3) took a 12-11 lead with six minutes left in the second quarter, but only managed one point the rest of the half as the Knights immediately responded with a 17-0 run and never looked back.
The Dragons cut that deficit down to 34-27 and 41-34 in the final frame, but that was as close as they got. They trailed 10-7 after eight minutes, 23-12 at intermission and 34-22 to start the final eight minutes.
Staffen sank two 3-pointers. Bri Abt was held to six points after three straight doubles. Sadie Greminger and Lexi Warren both hit 3s.
Madisen Mills led the Knights with 14 points and had two treys. She was 6 for 6 on free throws all in the fourth quarter.
Brynn Johnson added 11 points with a 3, while Anniston Mapes had nine points and was 5 for 6 from the foul line in the fourth quarter.
This game originally was scheduled four days earlier but was postponed due to icy conditions.
— Michael Boyd Jr., Herald sports editor
Fredericktown 36, Dragons 30
STE. GENEVIEVE, Mo. — Keira Francis missed valuable court time for Fredericktown after committing three fouls during the first half on Thursday evening at Ste. Genevieve’s Johnson Gymnasium.
With scoring at a premium, the senior forward maximized her minutes in the third quarter, as three field goals helped the visiting Blackcats gain a measure of
Fredericktown then surrendered only three points to Ste. Genevieve in the final stanza, and secured an MAAA conference victory behind sturdy defense. They outrebounded the host 33 to 16.
The ’Cats were hounded by 20 turnovers and made just 3-of-10 free throws, but still successfully moved on from a frustrating 37-point rout by Saxony Lutheran one night earlier. They shot just 28% from the floor.
Francis finished with 12 points (5 of 9 shooting, eight points in third period) and eight rebounds for Fredericktown (8-9, 2-1 MAAA), while Ava Penuel added nine points with 10 rebounds as the primary ball handler.
Amelia Miller was close to a triple-double with nine points, nine rebounds and registered her fifth and sixth blocks of the game during the final defensive possession.
Ste. Genevieve (7-7, 1-2) was only 20% shooting overall and 0 for 9 from 3-point range. They registered their first team foul of the fourth quarter with 27.2 seconds to play, leaving three to give as the clock soon expired.
Junior center Bri Abt notched a double-double with 12 points (6 for 17 shooting) and 12 rebounds, and picked up a loose ball to score as the Dragons trailed 30-29 with 5:53 remaining.
But the home team could not generate another field goal, and ended with 16 turnovers. A modest but important 6-0 run propelled Fredericktown to victory.
Miller caught an interior lob pass from Penuel for an immediate layup. Gabbie McFadden banked in a runner, and Penuel ripped away control of a rebound for a clinching putback.
Fredericktown carried a narrow 19-17 lead at halftime, and Francis first provided a defensive spark by intercepting an errant pass near midcourt and being bumped down in transition.
She nailed a corner 3-pointer to capitalize moments later, and added a mid-range shot as the Lady Cats established their largest lead at 29-19.
Ste. Genevieve regrouped when Abt netted two straight baskets on a long pass from Chloe Staffen and baseline bounce feed from Kiki Asher.
Staffen crashed to convert a third chance through contact before the third quarter concluded, and was a defensive standout for the Dragons with six steals.
Sadie Greminger made two layups during an early 8-0 push by Ste. Genevieve, and provided 10 points (4 of 8 shooting) in defeat plus four rebounds. Her excellent baseline runner created an 11-8 lead.
Freshman guard Maggie Wood dished an offensive rebound to Miller for an assist, then drained a 3-pointer to send Fredericktown ahead 17-15.
Kayden Huck corralled eight rebounds for the Dragons, who were 4-of-10 from the line. Lexi Warren had four rebounds. Staffen had four rebounds and a block.
— Matt King, Daily Journal sports editor