Report by Wes Gwaltney
Both Pioneer varsity teams would gear up and head to Craighead County Friday night to face two very tough matchups in the Jonesboro Golden Hurricanes in 5A East conference action.
In the opener, the Lady Hurricanes (14-4) (6-2), who entered the ballgame on a six-game conference win streak, would seek revenge on the unbeaten Lady Pioneers who had given Jonesboro their lone conference loss back in December.
A game that was tight the whole way with teams trading buckets, and no team leading by more than five at any point would not even come down to the final seconds but the final four-tenths of a second.
With the Lady Pioneers trailing by one, Senior Kaylee Clark would throw up the last chance heave from nearly half-court, but would be fouled hard and would get the ability to shoot three very crucial free throws.
After tying the game with the first, Clark would make the go-ahead free throw and the Lady Pioneers would escape with a 46-45 victory over the Lady Hurricanes.
That keeps the perfect season alive for the Lady Pioneers (17-0) (8-0) in what was their toughest ballgame this year.
Leading the Lady Pioneers in scoring was Senior Izzy Higginbottom with 24 points, Senior Kaylee Clark with 11, and Senior Riley Freeman who would add nine points.
In the nightcap, the Pioneers would have a tough task ahead of them as the Hurricanes entered the ballgame perfect in conference play and riding a seven-game winning streak.
The Hurricanes opened the ballgame quickly, scoring buckets aplenty, but the Pioneers (12-7) (3-5) would rally from being down double digits at several points to close the quarter down 24-19.
The Hurricane defense would tighten up on the Pioneers in the second quarter as they outscored Batesville twenty-three to seven and would take a twenty-one point lead into halftime.
The Hurricanes (12-3) (8-0) would continue racking up points, but the Pioneers showed resilience and heart throughout, as the Hurricanes would add to their lead in the third 73-40 and would grab the victory by a final of 84-47.
Leading the Pioneers in scoring was Junior Wes Lange with 14, Freshman Caden Griffin would add 12 and Senior John Paul Morgan and Junior Logan McSpadden would add seven apiece.
Both Pioneer varsity squads will stay on the road Tuesday night as they look to complete the season sweep of the Greene County Tech Golden Eagles in conference play. JV games will tipoff at 5 p.m. and Varsity action will follow at 6 p.m.