Lady 'Hounds Fall in NEA Final

Thursday, January 5, 2017
Lady Greyhound Natalie Lentz prepares to launch a shot from behind the three-point line during championship game play at the NEA Invitational Tournament last Tuesday. (TD Photo/Anthony Cossey)

Marmaduke (20-6) couldn't get the stop they needed in the fourth quarter, as they got to within one point twice, before falling 43-38 to the Riverside Lady Rebels in the championship game of the girls' Division I bracket of the NEA Invitational Tournament in Jonesboro.

Tabitha Hyten got the Lady Greyhounds on the board first with a basket inside before Riverside scored back to back baskets to make the score 4-2. Marmaduke scored the next six points as Jordan Mays scored inside, Natalie Shelton got a steal and lay-up and Mays scored inside again to make it 8-4 Marmaduke. The Lady Rebels hit a jumper, Shelton hit a jumper for the Lady Greyhounds as Riverside put back an offensive rebound to make it 10-8 Lady Greyhounds after one.

Riverside scored the first six points of the second quarter to take a 14-10 lead. Mays hit one of two free throws for Marmaduke only to see Riverside hit a three-pointer and get a lay-up off the break to make the score 19-11 Lady Rebels. Shelton hit one of two free throws for the Lady Greyhounds, Riverside hit a three-pointer and made one of two free throws before Mays drilled a three-pointer for Marmaduke to make the score 23-15 Lady Rebels. Riverside hit one of two free throws and Hyten netted a three-pointer for Marmaduke to make the score 24-18 Lady Rebels at the half.

The Lady Rebels opened the third quarter with a 6-0 run making it 30-18 before Natalie Lentz canned a three-pointer before scoring inside for Marmaduke to make the score 30-23 Riverside. The Lady Rebels scored inside as Lentz drilled a three-pointer for the Lady Greyhounds to make the score 32-26 Riverside at the end of three.

Hyten hit another three-pointer for Marmaduke as Shelton followed with one of two free throws making it 32-30 Riverside. Riverside scored inside as Hyten drilled a three-ball from the top of the key to make it 34-33 Lady Rebels. Riverside hit a three-pointer as Lentz answered with a three-pointer for Marmaduke to make the score 37-36 Lady Rebels. Riverside scored the next four points making it 41-36 before Shelton scored inside for Marmaduke to make the score 41-38. The Lady Rebels added two free throws to make the final score 43-38 Riverside.

"We knew Riverside was a good team as they beat us by 12 or 15 earlier at our place. We played them a lot closer here on this neutral floor and had a chance to win there at the end," Marmaduke head coach Rick Smith said after the game. "I was proud of our girls as we got down early and fought back. I thought they did some good things today," Smith added.

Hyten and Lentz both scored 11 points to lead Marmaduke as Mays and Shelton scored eight points each.

Chosen to the All-Tournament team were Lentz, Shelton, Mays and Scout Weatherford.

The Lady 'Hounds were scheduled to play Wednesday evening against Trumann in the Kell Classic at Swifton.

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