Posted: Thursday, 14 March 2013 10:54PM

Webb City gets by Smithville

Columbia, Mo. (  -- When the final horn sounded, Webb City junior Mikaela Burgess let out a scream that was a mixture of excitement, joy and relief.

The Lady Cardinals had withstood Smithville’s last punch and were headed to the Class 4 state title game.

“Just those last few seconds and the run (Smithville) had, when I heard that buzzer it finally hit me,” Burgess said. “We won. I guess the emotion just got to me.”


Burgess poured in a game-high 23 points and Webb City overcame a key late turnover to beat Smithville 54-53 on Thursday night. The Lady Cardinals head into Saturday’s 4:50 p.m. final against undefeated and nationally ranked Incarnate Word Academy as heavy underdogs.
Webb City coach Brad Shorter isn’t ready to concede a victory.

“They’re a quality program, but it’s basketball and anything can happen,” Shorter said. “We’re not going in there and just giving them the trophy.”

Webb City led for most of the game against Smithville, but had to come up with several answers for the Lady Warriors in the fourth quarter. Smithville was trying to reach its third straight Class 4 title game, where the Lady Warriors lost in 2011 and 2012.

Two free throws from Kaitlin Beason put Webb City up 54-50 with 18 seconds remaining. Madison Nelson then drove in and converted a three-point play for Smithville, bringing the Lady Warriors within one point in the final 12 seconds.

After the Webb City in-bound, Smithville forced a trap and took the ball away. But after calling timeout, the Lady Warriors were unable to get off a clean look before time ran out.

“We just talked about, ‘Be strong. Talk,’” Shorter said. “We talked about the sideline play they like to run. We wanted to switch screens, too.

“We defended well and didn’t give them an opportunity.”

The fourth quarter was tight. Webb City’s 46-41 margin with 5:07 remaining was the biggest lead either side had in the final eight minutes.

Smithville was 20-for-60 from the field to Webb City’s 17-for-36. The Lady Warriors grabbed 37 total rebounds, 17 offensive due to missing several attempts near the basket. Webb City had 28 rebounds, led by Casey Heger’s 10.

Paige Imhoff led Smithville with 19 points and 11 rebounds.

Webb City was 15-for-26 at the free throw line while Smithville went 9-for-13.

Smithville 10 16 11 16 --- 53
Webb City 15 18 6 15 --- 54
Smithville – Paige Imhoff 19, Madison Nelson 15, Kelsey Mothershed 8, Bethany Pierce 3, Sabrina Golubski 2, Miranda Migletz 2, Kyli Nelson 2, Abby Waters 2
Webb City – Mikaela Burgess 23, Desirea Buerge 13, Casey Heger 10, Kaitlin Beason 6, Megan Heman 2


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