LEDGER SPORTS ROUNDUP: North Callaway girls regain flow in 45-32 win at home against Louisiana

By Jeremy Jacob, Sports Editor
Posted 12/16/22

Girls basketball

The North Callaway girls weren’t always running smoothly Thursday night but had enough good spurts.

The Ladybirds won their second straight Eastern Missouri Conference …

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LEDGER SPORTS ROUNDUP: North Callaway girls regain flow in 45-32 win at home against Louisiana


Girls basketball

The North Callaway girls weren’t always running smoothly Thursday night but had enough good spurts.

The Ladybirds won their second straight Eastern Missouri Conference game and second of the week with their 45-32 victory at home against Louisiana, who dropped its first conference game. North Callaway (5-3, 2-1 EMO) finished with 16 assists, including a team-high seven dished out by Natalie Shryock, to eventually pull away from the Lady Bulldogs (4-3, 2-1 EMO).

Shryock scored 14 points and knocked down three 3-pointers to round out her night, Riley Blevins led the team with 17 points, four steals and three 3-pointers, Ellie Bedsworth finished with eight points, and Lakyn Hartley and Lauren Riecke combined for 14 rebounds, with Hartley pulling down a team-high eight boards.

Head coach Tim Turlington said he liked the 10-4 start to the first quarter, but there were times North Callaway’s offensive flow was disrupted. Part of it could be explained by Louisiana’s zone defense and perhaps more could be attributed to the early 6 p.m. tipoff time, but he said he knows for sure more work needs to be done in practice to maintain flow in transition throughout the game.

“I don’t think we’re seeing what we need to see out of that transition, and I’ll take the hit on that,” Turlington said. “We started off the (second) half, we ran a little set, got Riley a good look and she knocked it down. That started it and then we came down and got a little bucket here and bucket there.”

Turlington said Louisiana going to man-to-man defense helped in this transition from North Callaway being ahead 29-24 early in the fourth quarter to building its biggest lead at 41-24 minutes later.

Blevins and Shryock each knocked down 3-pointers, and Bedsworth threw up a sky-high shot that rimmed in and out only for her to rebound and drop the second backboard-topping shot in. The Ladybirds had a 12-0 run that was snapped with around 2:30 left to go after Louisiana hit a free throw.

Shryock, Blevins and Bedsworth scored 35 of North Callaway’s 37 points, but it was from that point Turlington said the Ladybirds resembled the style he would like to see more. Faith Cash was found for an open jumper, and later on, Hartley and Riecke were given close opportunities at the rim that they finished. Shyrock was at the center of most of the action, but six other Ladybirds were also credited with at least one assist.

“When she’s scoring a little bit and giving up assists, that puts Lakyn Hartley, Faith Cash and Lauren Riecke getting into the action,” Turlington said. “That’s exactly what we want. This is our eighth game, and I told the girls anything we do before Christmas is going to be extra. We’re coming along.”

In the third quarter, when North Callaway was playing Louisiana about even as it outscored the Lady Bulldogs 11-9, the Ladybirds weren’t completing these passes and instead the ball was deflecting off defenders’ arms and even going the other way. Turlington said his team was mainly “forcing stuff, seeing stuff that wasn’t there and weren’t playing our angles very good.”

The offense improved as well as North Callaway’s rebounding, Turlington said. The Ladybirds didn’t have as much of a presence on the boards, but Hartley and Riecke led the effort in the second half as North Callaway finished with six offensive rebounds in the second half. 

“Six offensive rebounds made a big difference,” Turlington said. “We knocked down some shots, played a little better on the defensive end, created some turnovers in the second half and kept them out of stuff that they were wanting to do. We gave ourselves opportunities, but we just need to capitalize on those opportunities to extend leads and build leads.”

North Callaway faces Community R-6 (7-1) at 1:30 p.m. Saturday in the Gary Filbert Classic at the Mexico Sports Complex in Mexico. 

The boys face the Trojans right after that at 3:45 p.m., which will be the Thunderbirds’ first action since Tuesday’s victory at home against Van-Far. Their Friday home game tonight against Louisiana has been postponed to an undetermined date because of sickness on Louisiana's team.

Mexico shooting dips in 51-44 loss at Hannibal

The Mexico girls felt like Thursday could have been their game if their shooting percentages were higher in certain areas.

The Lady Bulldogs lost 51-44 at North Central Missouri Conference foe Hannibal (6-2, 2-1 NCMC) — their first loss to the Lady Pirates in six games — after shooting 1-for-17 from 3-point territory and 11-for-22 from the free throw line. 

Claire Hudson led with nine points, Kenzie Taylor followed with eight points, Lexie Willer finished with seven points and three assists, Messiah Simpson had five points and nine rebounds, Jo Thurman and Karlee Sefrit each had five points, and Kierstan Epperson pulled down five rebounds. 

For Hannibal, Abbie Martin led with 15 points, and Mariah Mayfield followed with 14 points.

“Turnovers led to them outscoring us in the paint,” head coach Ed Costley said. “It’s good seeing some of our inexperienced players coming off bench providing some good production and improving each week. Karlee Sefrit and Makenzie Taylor each played well and had some big moments for us.”

Hannibal led 28-17 at halftime before Mexico (3-6, 1-2 NCMC) outscored the Lady Pirates 27-23 in the second half.

Mexico faces Class 2 No. 10 Harrisburg (6-3) at 6:45 p.m. Saturday in the Gary Filbert Classic at the Mexico Sports Complex in Mexico.

Class 3 No. 3 South Shelby 50 Centralia 43 in Shelbina

Boys basketball

Mexico boys win on glass in Hannibal 58-36

The Mexico boys had plenty of chances Thursday night because of their work on the glass.

The Bulldogs picked up 13 offensive rebounds compared with North Central Missouri Conference foe Hannibal six in a 58-36 win in a road game Thursday night. The offensive boards helped Mexico (6-2, 2-1 NCMC) win the rebounding battle 39-25.

The defense also was disruptive with its 22 deflections and 13 steals. 

DJ Long led with 20 points, four deflections and two steals, Jordan Shelton followed with 17 points, five deflections and three steals, PJ Perkins had 10 points, six rebounds and three steals, Jaydon Eldridge finished with seven points and a team-high nine rebounds, and Dante Kelley brought down seven rebounds — five on the offensive glass.

Mexico had a 13-9 lead after one against Hannibal (3-4, 1-2 NCMC) before taking a 27-14 halftime lead and a 44-22 advantage after three quarters.

Mexico faces North Point at 8:30 p.m. Saturday in the Gary Filbert Classic at the Mexico Sports Complex in Mexico.

Centralia steps up in fourth quarter to defeat South Shelby 45-39

The Centralia boys were down a starter and down three points going into the fourth quarter Thursday night in Shelbina.

The Panthers outscored South Shelby 16-7 in the fourth quarter to win their Clarence Cannon Conference opener 45-39. Big man Boen Zimmerman was unavailable so Logan Rosenfelder led with 14 points and several other Panthers made plays late for the victory.

Jack Romine had eight points, and Benji Chick finished with six points via two crucial 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to help Centralia (4-3, 1-0 CCC) overcome a 32-29 deficit after three quarters. Jayden Baker led South Shelby (3-5, 0-1 CCC) with 14 points.

“We struggled to get anything going most of the game, but Logan kept us in it,” head coach Scott Humphrey said. “Benji Chick hit two massive 3-pointers in the 4th quarter, and Noah Kropf and Jack Romine had two consecutive buckets around the rim to give us the lead and help get us the win.”

Centralia plays Iowa’s Fort Madison at 12:30 p.m. Saturday in the CCC/SEC River Rivalry Series at Keokuk High School in Iowa.

Girls junior varsity basketball

Community R-6 JV routed by undefeated South Shelby

The Community R-6 junior varsity girls had a tough second assignment Thursday.

The Lady Trojans lost 42-13 to South Shelby’s freshmen and sophomores, moving them to a perfect 7-0. 

The varsity South Shelby squad is currently 7-1 after its 50-43 home victory Thursday against Centralia and are ranked No. 3 in Class 3. Head coach Bob Curtis was impressed by South Shelby’s JV after hitting six 3-pointers in the game and surging to a 31-12 lead after three quarters. 

“They hit six 3s in the contest and would win a lot of games on the varsity level with their freshmen and sophomores,” Curtis said. “This was just our second JV game of the season as two have been canceled and it showed.”

Among the Community scorers were Kat Meyer with five points, Adrianna Woodson with four, Aaliyah Welch with three and Rylee Rafferty with one.

Boys junior varsity wrestling

Mexico takes fifth at Blair Oaks tournament, Wilson wins class

The Mexico junior varsity boys had a nice showing at the Blair Oaks JV wrestling tournament on Wednesday.

The Bulldogs were one of five teams to score 100 points, finishing fifth with 103 points — ahead of North Callaway’s 85 points and behind winner Capital City’s 175 points.

Evan Wilson led Mexico with his first-place finish in the 120b weight class as he won by pin, an 8-2 decision and then pinned North Callaway’s Keitan Matteson for the title.

Aaron Ortiz, Dominick Watson and David Bealler each took second place in 157b, 285a and 285b, respectively. Ortiz won by pin twice and then a 6-4 decision against Capital City’s Michael Henderson before losing an 8-1 decision to Wyatt Haden. Watson won by pinfall then was pinned before closing his night with a pin of North Callaway’s Malikai Lang, and Bealler had a similar path that involved pinfall victories over North Callaway’s Alexander Hudnell and Fulton’s Gage Cannon.

Evan Ford in 144c, Jayden Hodge at 175, Isaiah Hernandez at 175c and Tucker Hutchison at 215a each earned third place.