It was only fitting that Sierra Pryor got the scoring started in the Peoples Bank Holiday Classic championship game.
The Sullivan junior guard put the Lady Eagles on top of Farmington for good with a layup for the opening score of the game Friday. Pryor, the tournament MVP, led Sullivan to the title of the inaugural event with 15 points, 49-35.
“We felt like it was a competitive tournament,” Sullivan Head Coach Jason Merkel said. “We were fortunate that we came out and played well and hit some big shots. I’m really proud of our girls for how they played tonight.”
Merkel feels this is a milestone for Sullivan’s program.
“We haven’t played in a whole lot of big-time games,” Merkel said. “And we had never won the big game. I was proud of how they won the championship game and proud of how they played composed.”
Sullivan never trailed in the game. After Pryor’s opening basket, Demi Reed hit a shot to make it 4-0.
Farmington’s Kaitlyn Gilliam scored to cut the lead in half, but the early part of the game proved to be all Sullivan. The Lady Eagles led after one quarter, 18-14, and stretched the lead to seven points at the intermission, 26-19.
In the third quarter, Sullivan couldn’t put the game out of reach, but the Lady Eagles didn’t let Farmington catch up, either. Sullivan led 36-27 after three quarters.
Farmington had chances to trim the gap in the fourth quarter, but couldn’t take advantage. Meanwhile, Sullivan stressed ball control, took time off the clock and scored baskets to put the game out of reach with the final margin of victory being 49-35.
Pryor’s 15 points included one three-point basket.
Also reaching double-digits were Reed and Aley Lucas.
Reed, who made the all-tournament second team, scored 11 points.
Lucas, a first-team pick, netted 10 points.
Jessica Heinle scored seven points while Kaitlynn Hill added four and Megan Brandt contributed two points.
Also playing was Tessa Johanning.
The game’s scoring leader was Farmington’s senior standout Rachel Williams, who scored 20 points to tie for the tournament lead in that category.
“She’s going to get her points,” Merkel said. “She did a good job on the dribble drive against us. We weren’t able to stop her. We contained her a little better in the second half. Overall, we’re proud of how we held everyone else down. She still got her points.”
Kaila Nash and Shania Sweeney scored four points apiece for the Knightettes. Gilliam ended with three while Caity Friend and Jordan Martin scored two points apiece.
Martin was honored on the all-tournament second team.