During the past 24 years of the Borgia Girls Basketball Tournament, the host Lady Knights have pulled off a number of upsets.
But Wednesday’s semifinal against top-seeded Parkway South will have to go into the near-miss category.
“We had opportunities to stay in this game,” Borgia Head Coach Stacia Parsell said. “We missed layups and a couple of free throws, all the little things you need to do to knock off a No. 1 seed in a tournament. It just didn’t go the way we needed it to go tonight. When we had opportunities, we would turn the ball over two or three possessions in a row and give them more opportunities. You just can’t do that against a team like that.”
The top-seeded Lady Patriots (16-3) held off fourth-seeded Borgia (13-5), 51-42.
Borgia actually led after one quarter, 15-13.
After Parkway South bounced back to lead at the intermission, 25-18.
“I thought we handled it well until the last minute and a half of the first half and things fell apart on us,” Parsell said.
Borgia rallied to tie the game at 31-31 on a pair of Katie Lindemann free throws with 3:13 to play in the third quarter.
But the Lady Patriots went on a six-point run to close out the quarter at 37-31.
“We never let it get out of hand,” Parsell said. “We never let them get a huge lead. I still think we can play better. We’re not overreaching. This is something we can do.”
Parkway South built the lead up to double digits in the fourth quarter before Borgia fought back to make the final margin nine points on a three-point basket by Janie Arand.
“They have a lot of size and a lot of strength,” Parsell said. “I really felt my kids did everything we asked them to do. They stayed in this game when they probably shouldn’t have been in it. They just came out and worked so hard. We’re getting closer and closer to putting a complete game together.”
Borgia plays Helias, a 49-36 loser to Troy in the other semifinal, Saturday at 2:30 p.m. in the third-place contest.
Saturday’s game is a rematch of last year’s Borgia Tournament championship game and the first meeting this season. The teams played three times last year.
“There isn’t an easy team in this tournament,” Parsell said. “It’s going to be a good game again.”
Parkway South faces the tournament’s shock team, Troy. The sixth-seeded Trojanettes have taken down third-seeded Union and second-seeded Helias so far in the tournament.
Borgia was led in scoring by Arand, who netted 20 points while going 6-15 from the field, 3-7 from beyond the three-point arc and 5-6 from the free-throw line. She also had four rebounds, one assist and one steal.
Arand scored seven points in the first quarter, seven in the third and six in the final eight minutes of action.
Next in the scoring column for Borgia was Katie Lindemann with eight points. She also had six rebounds and two steals while playing against bigger Parkway South interior players.
“Katie had two fouls early in the second quarter,” Parsell said. “That’s a lot of our strength sitting on the bench for a long time. Katie means so much to us on both ends of the floor and makes so much of a difference.”
Molly Arand contributed six points, three assists and two rebounds.
Cassandra Hasted scored five points with six rebounds.
Morgan Spradling came off the bench to hit one basket for two points. She also had two rebounds.
Emily Grahl closed with one point, three assists, three steals and one rebound.
Parkway South was paced by Becca Steins, who tied Arand for the game’s scoring lead with 20 points. She hit one three-point basket and was 5-6 from the free-throw line.
Brittany Thomas added 13 points while running the offense and taking advantage on the fast break.
Dominique Broadus, a force in the lane, ended with nine points.
Parkway South got five points from Riley Reddin and two points apiece from Molly Ray and Elizabeth Swartz.