Lady Lions end season with loss in state quarterfinals
GRAVETTE — The Lady Lions breezed past Ashdown in state tournament play but lost by one in a heart-breaking quarterfinal game on Friday, losing to Riverview, 76-75.
Abbie Jiles scored 24 points, and Riverview (259) held off Gravette (25-8).
Parker Smith had 13 points for the Lady Raiders. Baylee Davis poured in 12 points and Alexa Gray added 11 points.
Jiles’ three-point play gave the Lady Raiders a 65-64 lead with 1:54 left to play. Jessica Bookout’s basket helped Gravette regain the lead at 66-65, but that was the last lead for the Lady Lions.
With 1:30 remaining, Jiles hit two free throws to give Riverview a 67-66 lead. In the final 1:02, the Lady Raiders were 8 of 10 from the free-throw line.
Kyrstin Branscum scored a game-high 27 points for the Lady Lions. Teagan Dixon finished with 11 points, and Tori Foster added 10 points.
GRAVETTE 64, ASHDOWN 39
Despite committing 33 turnovers, Gravette defeated Ashdown.
Gravette (25-7), which shot 18 of 40 from the floor, had three players score at least 10 points. Junior guard Jessica Bookout scored a team-high 13 points. Sophomore guard Cally Kildow finished with 11 points, while freshman guard Shylee Morrison added 10.
Senior guard Lark Wilkerson led Ashdown (17-13) with 14 points, including four three-pointers. Zakiyah Rhone, a senior guard, added 10 points for the Lady Panthers, who shot 13 of 53 from the floor and committed 32 turnovers.
It was 13-13 entering the second quarter, then Gravette went on a 18-2 run to take a 31-16 lead with 2:08 left in the first half. Senior guard Kyrstin Branscum’s three-pointer capped the run for the Lady Lions. Gravette outscored Ashdown 24-7 in the second quarter to lead 37-20 at halftime.
On a sad note, Gravette sophomore Cally Kildow was injured in the quarterfinal game against Riverview and will not be able to pitch for the Lady Lions until broken bones in her lower leg are healed. Kildow was Gravette’s star pitcher in her freshman year and threw shutout games and broke strikeout records at the school. The injury is a blow both to Kildow and her teammates.