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Lady Airedales Fall to Carl Junction 12/14/21

Lady Airedales fall to Carl Junction

By Kevin Taylor 

Alma Schools 


ANDERSON, Mo. — Alma coach Codey Mann expected some tired legs going into Monday’s opening round of the Mustang Classic at McDonald County High School. 


Playing for the fifth time in five days, Alma hung with Carl Junction for a half before falling, 69-49. The Lady Airedales face host McDonald County Tuesday at 5 p.m. 


“We depend on how well we shoot the ball, but the one thing we depend on the most is how well we play as a team,” Alma coach Codey Mann said. “I thought there were moments where we tried to make plays that weren’t there, and that’s frustrating. We’re coming off a really good high from Texas, and we’re coming back and playing a really good team with a really good player.”


The Lady Bulldogs’ Destiny Buerge finished with 31 points to lead all scorers. Alma’s Presli Taylor had 15 points in the loss. 


“There’s not much time to feel sorry for yourself,” Mann said. “How we play tomorrow will say a lot about our character.”


The Lady Airedales went 4-0 at the Brook Hill Tournament in Texas. After beating East Texas Home School Saturday by 30 (66-36), the team drove home and, after one day of recuperating, hit the highway Monday for the 90-minute jaunt to Anderson, Mo. 


Carl Junction (5-2) lost to Farmington Saturday, 68-49, in the finals of the Joplin Lady Eagles Classic. 


Alma (6-4) hung with the Lady Mustangs for much of the first half. Moose Carmack’s 3-pointer pulled Alma within 39-31, and considering Carl Junction got 12 points from the free-throw line, Mann and Co. probably felt good. 


But the Lady Bulldogs opened the second half with a 13-0 run and were never challenged. Carl Junction was 20-of-24 from the foul line; Alma was 2-for-4. 


“We looked slow at times,” Mann said. “ We tried to do some things to guard their best player, and I think it took away our energy at the start.”


Taylor’s 3-point shooting has been a positive for the Lady Airedales. She hit a school-record eight during a blowout win over West Rusk, Texas last week. Monday, she nailed five more. 


“We ask Presli to do a lot; we want her to make more shots than she misses, for sure, because she’s the person we go to when we need a 3,” Mann said. “Defensively, her flying around and making plays in the 1-3-1 definitely helps us out. I just thought tonight defensively is probably the worst we’ve played all year. 


“Presli’s asked to do a lot, but I think she’s old enough and mature enough to handle it.”


“The right pass at the right time, I definitely feel like I shoot it better in rhythm,” Taylor said. “We just have to learn from it and bring the energy to the next game. What really shows our character is to come out and win the game tomorrow.”


McDonald County dropped its opener Monday, 58-37, to Southside.