PITTSBURG — PITTSBURG — The Pittsburg Lady Panthers used a “box-and-1” defense that tried to contain Kiowa guard Addy Clift and limit her scoring.
Clift eventually figured out how to beat that defense, and until she did, Miranda Stiles kept the Cowgirls offense firing.
Clift scored 29, Stiles scored 19 and hit four first-quarter 3-pointers, and the Cowgirls beat the Lady Panthers, 78-58, Tuesday at a packed Dee Foster Gymnasium in Pittsburg.
“She’s one of the best players in the state,” Pittsburg coach Wes Wood said of Clift.
“Miranda hitting four 3s in the first quarter, she came out hot, and that’s what we were hoping didn’t happen. We can’t guard them all.”
Kiowa outscored Pittsburg 15-7 in the second quarter and led by 15 at halftime. Stiles stole a Pittsburg pass and turned it into a fastbreak layup, and after Mikal Wainscott hit a layup for Pittsburg, Kiowa forward Tori Gillispie went to the foul line and sank her first free throw to make it 32-26 Cowgirls.
Gillispie missed her second free throw, Pittsburg rebounded it but Clift picked off a pass and got it to center Rylee Smith to finish a rather unusual 3-point play.
Smith finished with 14 points, Gillispie with 10. Pittsburg’s guards hung with Kiowa’s at times during the game, but the Lady Panthers had no answer for the Cowgirls’ two dominant post players.
“They just left a lot of room, a lot of space that we could take advantage of, move the ball really well,” Smith said. “There were a bunch of open spaces in their defense. High post area was wide open a lot of the time.”
Kiowa coach Wade Daniel added, “The post girls rebounded well. They began to step it up, and they’re seeing the difference that it make. Rylee and Tori just boarded great.”