BENSON — Although the Benson Ladycats had previously defeated the Morenci Wildcats three time in earlier season action, the fourth game proved to be the downfall for Benson — losing to Morenci at home on Tuesday, Feb. 18 in the final game of the state championship play-in tournament 62-58.

“We were down 14-0 early in the game which was really hard to overcome, but we continued to battle back,” Ladycat varsity coach Robert Bristow said. “We simply needed to take better care of the basketball.”

The first quarter had the Ladycats down 15-20 and 26-38 at the end of the half. The third quarter had Benson outscoring Morenci 13-8 to end the quarter 39-46. Morenci, however, even with Benson again outscoring them 19-16 in the fourth quarter, held on to their lead to take the win and continue to the state championships in Prescott.

Leading the Ladycats on the scoreboard were: Emily Darwin with 29 points, Shaylin Taylor with 17 points, Chloe Martin with 5 points, Jennifer Barker and Celina Wilharm with 3 points each, and Ally Fenn with 1 point.

“The future looks good for our girls’ basketball program,” Coach Bristow said. “We have a young team with no graduating seniors. We will continue to improve with summer league lo and a lot of practice and competition.”

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