Marquee matchup turns into big-time mismatch at Shootout

    The Jefferson City Lady Jays rolled to a 58-24 win over Miller Career Academy on Saturday. (Kamen Entchev/KRCG13)

    JEFFERSON CITY --- This was a day that featured seven games and 10 1/2 hours of basketball, but it had one apparent, clear-cut marquee matchup.

    Apparently not. Instead, it was the biggest mismatch of the day.

    How much so?

    The Jefferson City Lady Jays could have gone scoreless in the second half --- and still won.

    By double-digits.

    The Lady Jays, ranked No. 1 in Class 5, outscored Miller Academy, No. 4 in Class 4, by a whopping 36-10 in the middle two quarters Saturday night on their way to a 58-24 domination of the Lady Phoenix during the River Region Credit Union Shootout at Fleming Fieldhouse.

    Some marquee matchups are better than others.

    "I thought our effort was really, really good," Lady Jays coach Brad Conway said. "We thought we could really take advantage of our height inside and when we did, good things happened. That was really a positive for us.

    "And then (on defense), our zone was really effective against them and their shooters."

    When you're bigger and better on both offense and defense, 58-24 happens.

    "It was a really good game for us, but I'm not going to say it was our best game, to date." Conway said. "But we did some really good things, we got the ball inside and then we were able to knock down some perimeter shots, too."

    The start was something else, however, as the Lady Phoenix (5-3) --- who finished fourth in Class 4 last year --- scored the game's first five points.

    But after that --- and in this the sixth game of a seven-game set that was sponsored in part by KRCG 13 --- 58-19 happened.

    The Lady Jays (7-0) rallied to take a 14-10 lead after one quarter and used a 22-6 scoring edge in the second to rip open a 34-16 lead. In the second, Hannah Nilges had a three-point play and a four-point play in a span of two minutes, as the 5-6 sophomore scored 12 of her game-high 14 points in the first half.

    "She can knock those shots (3-pointers) down," Conway said, "but we need other people to knock those shots down, too, so they just don't start keying on her. Hannah's also capable of putting it on the floor and breaking teams down and we she does that, she can knock down the little floater or dish it off inside."

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