PITTSBURG – Iola Middle School’s girls lost three close games and won one playing on the road against Pittsburg Community Middle School’s Purple Dragons Thursday.
The Pony eighth-grade A-team lost 30-21. After a tight first half with Pittsburg leading 13-10, Iola was outscored 6-2 in the third quarter.
The Ponies made a run, scoring nine points in the final period, but the Dragons added 11 to their total.
“A very good effort tonight. We did a good job with their press and played pretty good defense,” said Marty Taylor, IMS head coach. “They threw in a couple of crazy shots late but the girls played hard.”
Taylor Sell paced the Ponies with eight points and eight rebounds. Mikaela Platt pulled down nine rebounds and had five points.
Scoring two points each were Ashlie Shields, Taylor Heslop and Cassie Delich.
“Taylor Sell was fantastic. She played strong against some much bigger girls,” Taylor said. “Cassie gave us a lift off the bench.”
Iola’s lone win of the night came in the eighth-grade B-team game. The Ponies notched a 21-18 victory.
Hannah Ingle and Micaiah Larney each poured in six points for Iola. MaKayli Cleaver had four points.
Taelyn Sutterby and Cloey Burris had two points each and Bobbi Sinclair scored one.
Iola’s seventh-grade A-team suffered its third loss of the season, falling to Pittsburg 26-24.
“We had a great shot at the buzzer to tie it and it just didn’t go in,” Taylor said. “These girls really fought hard. We had a lot of things going against us and they never quit.”
The Ponies trailed 8-5 after one quarter then used an 11-6 surge in the second period to take a 16-14 halftime lead. Pittsburg was able to outscore Iola 6-5 in the third then 6-3 in the fourth for the win.
Sydney Wade fired in 10 points for the Ponies. Toni Macha cleared eight rebounds and tossed in six points. Lexi Heslop had four points while Riley Murry and Taylor Stout each had two points.
“Sydney and Toni kept us in this game with their effort,” Taylor said.
Pittsburg won the seventh-grade B-team game 10-8. Jadyn Sigg scored four points to lead Iola. Della Lohman and Alaynah Donovan had two points each.
Iola’s eighth-grade A-team is in today’s Winter Classic at Parsons. The Ponies opened play against Columbus.
Iola’s teams travel back to Parsons Monday to conclude their season.