Belle’s Lady Tigers claim title at Battle in Bourbon

By Will Johnson, Sports Editor
Posted 1/13/21

BOURBON — Dispatching Grandview in the first round and Pacific in the semifinals, Evin Farris’ Belle Lady Tigers earned a spot in the championship game opposite the Liberty Christian Lady …

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Belle’s Lady Tigers claim title at Battle in Bourbon

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BOURBON — Dispatching Grandview in the first round and Pacific in the semifinals, Evin Farris’ Belle Lady Tigers earned a spot in the championship game opposite the Liberty Christian Lady Eagles Saturday night at the Battle in Bourbon Girls Basketball Tournament.

Down by seven entering the third quarter of Saturday’s title game, Belle outscored Liberty Christian 27-16 in the final eight minutes to capture championship hardware with a 57-53 victory.

Trailing 8-7 after a tightly contested first quarter, Belle was led with three points from Chloe Krause.

Edged 19-15 in the second quarter by Liberty Christian, Farris’ Lady Tigers went into halftime trailing 27-22.

While Halle Smith was held to four first-half points, Gracie Schultz picked up the scoring slack with seven first-half markers leading Belle.

Outscored 10-8 opening the second half, the Lady Tigers ended the third quarter trailing the Lady Eagles 37-30.

Nearly doubling their point total in the fourth quarter, Belle was able to come from behind to knock off the top-seeded Lady Eagles from Liberty Christian.

Hampered by foul trouble in the first half, Smith was held to nine points against the Lady Eagles after dropping 31 points on Pacific in their 65-40 semifinal win over the Lady Indians.

Schultz went on to lead Belle with a team-high 24 points. Krause also finished in double figures with 13 points.

Natalie Gehlert matched Smith with nine points followed by two markers from Lauren Prigge.

Adison Roden led Liberty Christian and all scorers with a game-high 26 points.

Two nights earlier in the championship semifinals, Belle matched up with Pacific’s Lady Indians.

Tied at 5-5 early in the first quarter, Belle ended the first eight minutes on a 16-2 run before going on to a 65-40 victory.

Leading three Lady Tigers in double figures, Smith finished with an impressive stat line of 31 points, 14 rebounds, four steals, four assists and four blocked shots.

Schultz also flirted with a triple double against Pacific finishing with 17 points, six steals, five rebounds and two assists.

Krause rounded out Belle’s trio of double-digit scorers with 11 points. She just missed a double double adding eight assists, four steals and two rebounds.

Nevaeh Kinsey and Prigge each added three points for the Lady Tigers rounding out the scoring against Pacific.

Prigge also added four rebounds, three steals and two assists to her three points.

Gehlert also pulled down five rebounds against Pacific.

First-round action last Tuesday at Bourbon pitted Belle against Grandview.

Racing out to a 21-2 lead after one quarter, the Lady Tigers were able to cruise to victory over Grandview’s Lady Eagles out of Hillsboro by a final score of 64-35.

Smith led Belle and all scorers with a game-high 22 points against Grandview.

Krause also finished in double figures against the Lady Eagles scoring 12 of her 17 points in the first half.

Gehlert and Schultz each just missed double digits scoring eight points apiece against Grandview.

Miranda Sanders rounded out the scoring for Belle against the Lady Eagles with three first-half points.

Belle entered this week’s Comet Classic at Fatima High School on a six-game winning streak.

That came to a halt Monday night after they fell to St. James in first-round action 74-37.

Now on the consolation side of the bracket, Belle will look to start a new win streak tonight (Wednesday) against Cuba at 8:30 p.m.

A win would put them in Friday’s consolation title game at 5:30 p.m., while a loss would move them to the seventh-place game at 4 p.m., against either Eldon or St. James’ JV.

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