Harrisonville girls top Tigers

February 21, 2014 

Harrisonville’s Brianna Kendrick (right), the Wildcats’ leading scorer with 18 points, drove past Excelsior Springs’ Nicole Rash.

JIM ARNOLD — /Special to the Democrat-Missourian

With postseason play approaching, the Harrisonville girls basketball team is happy to have a winning streak.

The Wildcats made it two in a row Feb. 18 when they beat Excelsior Springs 45-33 at their home gym. Fresh off winning at Oak Grove Feb. 13, the Wildcats won back-to-back game for the first time since defeating University Charter Academy and Oak Grove in early January.

Behind the strength of Brianna Kendrick’s 18 points, Harrisonville established a 15-point first quarter lead. Excelsior Springs matched the Wildcats bucket for bucket in the second half, but the Tigers never could overcome that early deficit.

“This year we are not so talented where we can show up and beat people,” Harrisonville coach Mark Rovig said. “We have to get up for every game or the little mistakes will hurt us,”

This is a young Wildcat team that, despite its 7 – 12 record, feels like it has a chance to do well in district play.

With back-to-back wins, the Wildcats may be creating the momentum they need to pull off some excitement later this season in district play. While a conference championship is out of reach for Harrisonville, a district title may be obtainable.

“We still have two weeks to prepare for districts, and to me the district tournament is a wide-open race,” said Rovig.

The Wildcats will open the district tournament against Warrensburg, then potentially face Missouri River Valley West Conference rival Pleasant Hill. Playing a team three times in a season is not an easy task and the Wildcats know that possibility exists.

“It could go one of two ways, because we know what we need to improve and work on,” said Harrisonville’s Brianna Kendrick. “Just because a game went one way the first time doesn’t mean it will go that way again.”

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