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Ready for a fight: Lady Jays face Rock Bridge tonight

Ready for a fight: Lady Jays face Rock Bridge tonight

February 25th, 2011 in News

Shelby Mustain (above) puts up a shot during Wednesday's semifinal game of the Class 5 District 9 Tournament against Hickman at Fleming Fieldhouse. The Lady Jays take on Rock Bridge for the district title tonight. (At right) Scott Stegeman of Jefferson City shoots over a Sedalia Smith-Cotton defender during Tuesday's semifinal game of the Class 5 District 9 Tournament at Fleming Fieldhouse. The Jays take on Rock Bridge tonight.

Photo by News Tribune

It will be a Jefferson City-Rock Bridge district title doubleheader tonight.

Action will begin with the boys Class 5 District 9 Tournament title game between the Jays and Bruins at 6 p.m.

"We've had some great games with Rock Bridge through the years," Jays coach David Fox said after Tuesday night's semifinal win over Sedalia Smith-Cotton. "We're going to do what we can over the next few days to prepare for another one.

"We have a huge task in front of us with Rock Bridge, but we're certainly excited about the opportunity."

The second-seeded Jays (12-13) got off to a good start Tuesday night against the Tigers, vaulting out to a 12-0 lead on their way to a 57-29 victory. The top-seeded Bruins 21-4, ranked No. 9 in Class 5) had four players score in double figures as they advanced with a 60-46 semifinal win over Hickman.

The Jays and Bruins met Feb. 10 in Columbia, with Rock Bridge taking a 69-51 win. It was close at the half, with the Bruins holding a 33-29 advantage at intermission, before Rock Bridge was able to pull away in final two quarters. Brendan Jackson had 18 points for the Jays in the game.

"We know we're going to have to bring our best (tonight)," Fox said.

The Jays are looking for their second straight district title. Jefferson City fell 40-39 to Holt in the sectionals.

The girls contest between the Lady Jays and Bruins is slated for a 7:30 p.m. start.

In Wednesday night's semifinals, Jefferson City (16-9) snapped a four-game losing streak to end the season with a 50-43 victory over Hickman. Shelby Mustain and Monique Townson were a potent 1-2 punch for the third-seeded Lady Jays, finishing with 17 and 14 points, respectively.

Top-seeded Rock Bridge (21-5, ranked No. 6) was a 37-21 winner over Sedalia Smith-Cotton in its semifinal.

It will be the second meeting of the season between the two teams. On Feb. 10 in Columbia, Rock Bridge held a 44-19 halftime lead before posting a 69-42 victory over Jefferson City.

"They came out on Senior Night and got after us from the start and didn't stop getting after us," Lady Jays coach Shane Meyer said. "We let the game get away from us."

It was 18-9 after one quarter before Rock Bridge used a 26-10 edge in the second period to take the big halftime advantage.

"Hopefully we can get off to a better start and hang around this time," Meyer said. "You never know, it's a district championship game. I know we're going to come out and compete."

Sadie Theroff had 12 points for the Lady Jays in that game. Lindsey Cunningham paced the Bruins with 19.

"We understand we have our work cut out for us, but we're going to give it our best," Meyer said.

The Lady Jays and Bruins met in the state sectional last year, with Rock Bridge taking a 34-30 victory.

The District 9 winners will face the District 10 champions in the sectionals Wednesday at Missouri S&T in Rolla. District 10 titles will also be decided tonight in Waynesville. Lebanon and Waynesville will meet in the boys game, while West Plains and Rolla will square off in the girls contest.