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Sullivan Edges Owensville, Moves to District Title Game

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Posted: Friday, March 7, 2014 2:30 pm

Hoping history repeats itself, the Sullivan Lady Eagles advanced to the championship game of the Class 4 District 9 Tournament with a 51-46 win over Owensville Thursday at Borgia.

“We knew this would be a good game,” Sullivan Head Coach Jason Merkel said. “We had played Owensville twice, tough, this season. Trying to beat a really good team with a standout player (sophomore Hailey Diestelkamp) three times in one season is tough. I couldn’t be more proud of our girls and our effort tonight, though.”

Owensville Head Coach Dwayne Clingman lauded his team’s effort.

“We worked hard for that one,” Clingman said. “Sullivan is a great team. We worked hard on our part and everybody contributed. We just got better as the year went on. We’re just one rebound or turnover away from beating a state-ranked team like that. Eventually, it will come. I’m very proud of the way we played.”

The Lady Eagles (22-4) are the defending district champions and find themselves in the same position as last year.

“We brought back six of the eight who played on the state quarterfinal team last year,” Merkel said. “We definitely have experience with a senior-laden team, so that helps in games like this.”

Thursday’s win over Owensville (20-7) marked the third time this season Sullivan beat the Dutchgirls. In 2013, Sullivan swept the season series over Borgia, winning for the third time in the district semifinals.

And Sullivan will face the top-seeded host team for the second year in a row. Last year, Sullivan knocked out Pacific after Pacific won the regular-season game. This time, the Lady Eagles will get their second shot at Borgia (24-2).

The title contest is set for a 6 p.m. tipoff Saturday night and will be followed by the championship boys game.

“That was a real good team we knocked off tonight,” Merkel said.

In Thursday’s contest, the biggest highlight belonged to Diestelkamp, who reached the 1,000-point milestone by sinking two free throws with 4:15 to play. That gave Owensville its last lead in the game, 42-41.

“That’s big for our program, big for our school and big for our community,” Clingman said. “Our basketball team has helped the community rally around the school a little bit. Hailey is a special player. She brought cupcakes for everybody. We’re all going to ride home together and she wants to celebrate with her teammates as much as they wanted to celebrate her 1,000th point. She’s the real deal and a great kid.”

Diestelkamp, the third girl to reach that milestone in Owensville program history, led the Dutchgirls in the game with 16 points and will start her junior season with 1,002 career points.

It’s possible that the game was the final one for Clingman, who has been named the school’s athletic director for 2013-14, following Steve Tappmeyer.

“We’re still working on that,” Clingman said. “If we can’t work it out, we’ll find someone who is ready to run it and see what we can get done.”

Sullivan’s go-to player in the game was senior Taylor Lucas, who scored 21 points.

However, with the game on the line, Sullivan received contributions from its entire lineup. Five different Lady Eagles scored points during the pivotal fourth quarter.

Following Lucas in the scoring column was her twin sister, senior Aley Lucas, with 10 points.

Junior Megan Brandt netted nine points.

Junior Kaitlynn Hill scored eight points with six coming in the final quarter.

Senior Sierra Pryor netted three points for the game.

Owensville again showed its lineup depth with seven different players getting into the scoring column.

“We have 11 kids we play every night,” Clingman said. “On any given night, any of them can do what they have to do.”

Sophomore Brookelyn Limberg followed Diestelkamp with nine points.

Senior Miranda Robertson scored six points.

Junior Emily Ellis ended with five points.

Seniors Taylor Payne and Jaelyn Gauer and sophomore Bailey Nelson scored two points apiece.

Owensville graduates four players from this team. Gauer, Payne, Robertson and Dayla Gruenloh graduate this spring.

“We’re going to lose four great senior leaders and two starters,” Clingman said. “We really didn’t have starters. We had three people who started every game and rotated players into the other two spots. We learned a lot this year. We grew up. It’s going to be fun next year.”

Sullivan scored first in the game, but Owensville went on a nine-point run, forcing Merkel to take a timeout.

“I’ve got the utmost confidence in this team,” Merkel said. “If we can keep it close, I know we can grind it out and complete with anybody. It’s just a matter of staying in the game and staying composed.”

After the break, the Lady Eagles roared back to go ahead, 14-11. Owensville got a final basket before the end of the first quarter and it was 14-13 after one quarter.

Sullivan held a 26-23 lead at the intermission, but the teams were tied 34-34 after three quarters.

The two squads traded the lead through the fourth quarter. Owensville took its final lead on Diestelkamp’s 1,000th point, 42-41, but Sullivan showed its veteran playoff experience in distributing the ball around to find open shooters.

Hill put the Lady Eagles up with an open shot from the blocks. After both teams missed chances, Sullivan took a three-point lead on two free throws by Brandt.

That three-point advantage was huge. Owensville was able to cut it to one, but couldn’t take the lead. Sullivan sealed the win with four consecutive free throws by the Lucas twins in the final 15 seconds.


Area Scoreboard

Boys Basketball

Friday, Jan. 2

Sullivan at Washington    7 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 6

Community Christian at Fulton SA    5:30 p.m.

Cardinal Ritter at Borgia    6:45 p.m.

*Crosspoint at Liberty Christian    7:30 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 8

Fulton SA at Bethel    6:30 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 9

*Borgia at St. Dominic    6:45 p.m.

*Ft. Zumwalt S at Washington    7 p.m.

*Crosspoint at Eagle Ridge    7:45 p.m.

Fulton SA at Calvary Lutheran Tny    TBA

Saturday, Jan. 10

&Borgia vs. Lutheran N    TBA

Fulton SA at Calvary Lutheran Tny    TBA

Monday, Jan. 12

%St. Charles vs. Bayless    6 p.m.

%Westminster vs. Washington    7:30 p.m.

Fulton SA at Providence    7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 13

%Borgia vs. St. Clair    6 p.m.

#South Callaway vs. North Callaway    6 p.m.

#Hermann vs. Russellville    6 p.m.

Heritage Classical at Crosspoint    7 p.m.

%Francis Howell Central vs. Union    7:30 p.m.

#Montgomery Co vs. New Bloomfield    7:30 p.m.

#Harrisburg vs. New Haven    7:30 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 15

#South Callaway-North Callaway loser vs. Montgomery Co-New Bloomfield loser    6 p.m.

#South Callaway-North Callaway winner vs. Montgomery Co-New Bloomfield winner    6 p.m.

Bethel at Fulton SA    6:30 p.m.

#Hermann-Russellville loser vs. Harrisburg-New Haven loser    7:30 p.m.

#Hermann-Russellville winner vs. Harrisburg-New Haven winner    7:30 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 16

%St. Charles-Bayless loser vs. Westminster-Washington loser    4 p.m.

%Borgia-St. Clair loser vs. Francis Howell Central-Union loser    5:30 p.m.

*Crosspoint at Community Christian    6:30 p.m.

%St. Charles-Bayless winner vs. Westminster-Washington winner    7 p.m.

Providence at Fulton SA    7 pm.

#Seventh-place game    7:30 p.m.

Consolation game    7:30 p.m.

%Borgia-St. Clair winner vs. Francis Howell Central-Union winner    8:30 p.m.

Saturday, Jan. 17

%Seventh-place game    2:30 p.m.

#Third-place game    3:30 p.m.

%Consolation game    4 p.m.

%Third-place game    5:30 p.m.

#Championship game    6:30 p.m.

%Championship game    7 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 20

Fulton SA at Liberty Christian    6:30 p.m.

Crosspoint at CAGSL    7:30 p.m.

%Washington Tournament

#South Callaway Tournament

Girls Basketball

Friday, Dec. 26

Seckman Tournament

Northwest 43, Mehlville 42

Festus 58, Patriettes 13

Seckman 36, Oakville 28

Pacific 73, Carnahan 38

Saturday, Dec. 27

Seckman Tournament

Mehlville 39, Patriettes 35

Oakville 73, Carnahan 38

Festus 47, Northwest 30

Pacific 51, Seckman 33

Monday, Dec. 29

Seckman Tournament

Seventh-place game—Carnahan vs. Patriettes    1:30 p.m.

Third-place game—Seckman vs. Northwest    1:30 p.m.

Consolation game—Oakville vs. Mehlville    3 p.m.

Championship game—Pacific vs. Festus   3 p.m.

Rolla Tournament

St. Clair vs. Waynesville    3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Dec. 30

Rolla Tournament

St. James-Sedalia loser vs. Waynesville-St.Clair loser    2 p.m.

St. James-Sedalia winner vs. Waynesville-St. Clair winner    5 p.m.

Wednesday, Dec. 31

Rolla Tournament

Consolation game    9 a.m.

Seventh-place game    9 a.m. at MS&T

Third-place game    12 p.m.

Championship game    3 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 2

Hermann at Washington    5:30 p.m.

New Haven at Bourbon    6 p.m.

Monday, Jan. 5

*Union at New Haven    6 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 6

*Holt at Washington    5:30 p.m.

*Crosspoint at Liberty Christian    5:30 p.m.

*Borgia at St. Dominic    6:45 p.m.

Wednesday, Jan. 7

Borgia at St. Clair    7 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 8

Fulton SA at Bethel    5 p.m.

Park Hills Central at Pacific    5:30 p.m.

Cuba at New Haven    6 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 9

*Ft. Zumwalt South at Washington    6 p.m.

*Crosspoint at Eagle Ridge    6:15 p.m.

Fulton SA at Calvary Lutheran Tny    TBA

Saturday, Jan. 10

Borgia vs. MICDS (St. Joseph’s Academy Shootout)    12:30 p.m.

Fulton SA at Calvary Lutheran Tny    TBA

Monday, Jan. 12

Lutheran South at St Clair    5:30 p.m.

Lindbergh at Pacific    5:30 p.m.

@Washington vs. Patriettes    5:30 p.m.

#Harrisburg vs. Russellville    6 p.m.

#New Bloomfield vs. Montgomery Co    6 p.m.

Fulton SA at Providence    6 p.m.

@Helias vs. Sullivan    7 p.m.

#North Callaway vs. New Haven    7:30 p.m.

#Hermann vs. South Callaway    7:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 13

Pacific at Ursuline    4:30 p.m.

Ft. Zumwalt East at St. Clair    5:30 p.m.

Heritage Classical at Crosspoint    5:30 p.m.

@St. Charles West vs. Union    5:30 p.m.

@Borgia vs. Eureka    7 p.m.

Wednesday, Jan. 14

#Harrisburg-Russellville loser vs. North Callaway-New Haven loser    6 p.m.

#Harrisburg-Russellville winner vs. North Callaway-New Haven winner    6 p.m.

#New Bloomfield-Montgomery Co loser vs. Hermann-South Callaway loser    6 p.m.

#New Bloomfield-Montgomery Co winner vs. Hermann-South Callaway winner    6 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 15

Bethel at Fulton SA    5 p.m.

Northwest at St. Clair    5:30 p.m.

@Washington-Patriettes loser vs. Helias-Sullivan loser    5:30 p.m.

@St. Charles West-Union loser vs. Borgia-Eureka loser    7 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 16

@Washington-Patriettes winner vs. Helias-Sullivan winner    5:30 p.m.

Providence at Fulton SA    5:30 p.m.

#Seventh-place game    6 p.m.

#Consolation game    6 p.m.

@St. Charles West-Union winner vs. Borgia-Eureka winner    7 p.m.

Saturday, Jan. 17

@Seventh-place game    1 p.m.

#Third-place game    2 p.m.

@Consolation game    2:30 p.m.

@Third-place game    4 p.m.

#Championship    5 p.m.

@Championship    5:30 p.m.

Monday, Jan. 19

*Owensville at St. Clair    5:30 p.m.

Union at Warrenton    6 p.m.

Montgomery Co at New Haven    6 p.m.

*Duchesne at Borgia    6:45 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 20

Fulton SA at Liberty Christian    5 p.m.

Parkway West at Pacific    5:30 p.m.

New Haven at Wellsville    5:30 p.m.

Crosspoint at CAGSL    6 p.m.

O’Fallon Christian at Borgia    6:45 p.m.

@Union Tournament

#South Callaway Tournament


Friday, Dec. 26

Union, Pacific at Hillsboro Tny    TBA

Saturday, Dec. 27

Union, Pacific at Hillsboro Tny    TBA

Monday, Dec. 29

Washington at Lindbergh Tny    TBA

Tuesday, Dec. 30

Washington at Lindbergh Tny    TBA

Wednesday, Jan. 7

*Ft. Zumwalt South at Washington     6 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 8

Washington at Granite City    4:30 p.m.

Borgia at Hancock Tri-Meet    5 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 9

Washington at GAC Championships    TBA

Saturday, Jan. 10

Washington at GAC Championships    TBA

Tuesday, Jan. 13

Union at Liberty Quad    5 p.m.

Washington at Warrenton    6 p.m.

*Sullivan at Pacific    6 p.m.

Wednesday, Jan. 14

*Washington at Holt/Ft. Zumwalt East    6 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 15

Westminster at Pacific    6 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 16

Union at Branson    5 p.m.

Saturday, Jan. 17

Borgia at Owensville Tny    9 a.m.

Washington, Pacific at 141 Rumble    TBA

Union at Branson Tny    TBA

Tuesday, Jan. 20

*Washington at Ft. Zumwalt North    6 p.m.

Union at Sullivan/St. James/Warrenton    5 p.m.

Girls Swimming

Wednesday, Jan. 7

Borgia at Kennedy    6:30 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 9

Borgia/Washington at MICDS    4:15 p.m.

Monday, Jan. 12

Borgia at DuBourg    6 p.m.

Thursday, Jan. 15

Washington at Clayton    4:15 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 16

Washington at Ft. Zumwalt West    3:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Jan. 20

Washington at Ft. Zumwalt East/Timberland    3:30 p.m.

*Conference Games