The Lady Bruins made it to the finals after a 77-62 shootout victory over Bella Vista Friday. Ponderosa trailed by four after three quarters but outscored the Broncos 25-6 in the fourth to win going away. Danielle Craft led the Bruins with 28 points; Morgan Martinenko tallied 18 and Ashley Beck added 14.
Bella Vista shot the lights out behind Michelle Hernandez and Teryn Jackson for three quarters but cooled off in the fourth as Ponderosa took off. Martinenko buried two three-pointers in the fourth — both daggers against scrambling Bronco defenders — scoring half of her points in the final eight minutes.
“It’s an exciting win, very back and fourth. We never lost hope and pulled it out at the end. We had real good ball movement that enabled me to hit those shots,” said Martinenko whose 18 points was a season high.
Key to the win was the pin-point passing of Brooke Sinner who found the scorers particularly in the second half. Martinenko hit five threes overall to match Craft. Sophia George (11 rebounds) added eight points and battled underneath the boards with Craft (16 rebounds).
Ponderosa 70, Center 42
Ashley Beck scored 10 of her game-high 24 points in the fourth quarter as the Lady Bruins pulled away from the Cougars to open the tournament Thursday. Center had trimmed its deficit to nine late in the third before Morgan Martinenko drained a three to close the quarter and Ponderosa opened the fourth on a 9-0 run to outscore the Cougars 24-8 over the last eight minutes.
Martinenko added 11 points, Danielle Craft (11 rebounds) scored 10 and Brooke Sinner and Maddie Clayton (11 rebounds) each had eight points.