SPRINGFIELD — Behind a record-setting night from sophomore Raegan McCowan, the Lebanon High School girls’ basketball team advanced to their third-straight district title appearance, upsetting the No. 2 seeded Parkview Vikings in the semifinal of the Class 6 District 10 tournament, 55-46.
Parkview had beaten Lebanon on February 23 by ten points.
“It is a great time of year, and there is nothing better than to be playing games and winning in March,” Lebanon head coach Jacky Payne said after the game. “I am proud of our team for coming out here and playing together against a team that had just beaten state-ranked Willard last week.
“This was a great team win.”
McCowan broke the program record for rebounds in a single game with 23 on Monday night and led all scorers with 22 points.
“Raegan played well (on Monday),” mentioned Payne. “She had a few turnovers and dealt with some no-calls, but she does so much on defense and offense. There is a lot on her shoulders, but she steps up and makes plays for us.”
Things started off a bit slow for Lebanon (15-11 overall) as they trailed 9-2 early in the game, but a layup from junior Jocee Pettyjohn, two made baskets by McCowan, and a three-point make from junior Chloe Shivers put LHS ahead 11-9 with just a minute remaining in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, Lebanon got a little loose with the ball and trailed by three, but Pettyjohn scored another layup, and Shivers added her second three-pointer of the game to beat the buzzer to take a crucial 23-18 lead into halftime.
“We were going to run a little play that we run throughout the year and hit two cutters coming off the baseline,” said Payne. “They backed up off her, and I told her to shoot it, and she stepped up and made some big baskets when we needed them.”
For the complete story, see Wednesday's edition of the LCR.