NASHVILLE — Faced with their first major challenge of the season, the defending Class 2A state champion Nashville Hornettes responded Friday in the semifinals of the Nashville Girls Thanksgiving Tournament.
Junior guard Jordi Harre made three 3-point baskets and scored 12 of her points in the fourth quarter as Nashville erased a 10-point deficit and went on for a 39-37 victory over Collinsville.
With the score tied at 37, Nashville (3-0) ran the clock down to six seconds where Harre hit a 10-foot jumper from the lane, giving her team the lead for good.
Collinsville (2-1) then turned the ball over and Nashville had survived an early test.
"Jordi played well, but we had some others who stepped up, made plays and got her the ball in a position where she could hit shots,'' Hornettes coach Wayne Harre said. "We had some kids off the bench, who I got on pretty hard there, who responded late in the game. That was good to see.''
The win moves Nashville into the title game on Saturday at 8 p.m., where it will take on Massac County.
The Lady Patriots finished pool play with a 3-0 mark after beating Okawville 38-10 on Friday.
Senior guard Shawn Rennegarbe added 10 points for Nashville, which was only 4-of-15 from the foul line and had problems defending the Kahoks in the paint.
Sophomores Gabby Morgan and Kassidy Smith combined for 13 points in the first half, which ended with Collinsville leading 22-16.
With Julie Scheiter scoring six of her 13 points in the third quarter, the Kahoks' lead grew to 34-25.
Collinsville, however, only scored three points in the final quarter as Nashville's pressure and Harre's poise took over.
The 5-foot, 7-inch Harre sank 3s on consecutive possessions to bring Nashville within 34-31. She then made her third 3 of the period with 1:46 left, tying the game at 37.
"We had a hand in her face. They were setting screens for her and we may have been a split-second late, but we were playing good defense," Collinsville coach Lori Billy said of Harre. "She just hit the shots.
"It's a heartbreaker. But I was pleased with our effort. We're playing a lot of young kids who haven't been in this kind of situation before.''
Collinsville will play Mascoutah in the third-place game at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday.
Mascoutah 59, Mount Vernon 47
Senior Brittney Zipfel scored 24 points and sophomore guard Katie Jokisch added 14 as the Indians moved into the third-place game with a 12-point win.
"What is this? Our third game? Each game I thought we've played a little better and this time of year that's what you want to see,'' Indians coach Terry Moeller said. "Brittney (Zipfel) worked hard in the offseason and is much stronger this year. You can see that in the way she's playing.
"I thought she played a very good all-around game tonight.''
Triad 41, Freeburg 37
Sophomore guard Sophie Thompson scored 13 points -- Including two key free throws with 18.4 seconds remaining -- as the Knights (2-4) held off Freeburg.
Getting eight points apiece from freshman Hannah Johnson, sophomore Sam Woods and Thompson, the Knights led 27-16 at halftime.
But when the Midgets' Abby Lealaimatafao scored the first 10 points of the second half, Freeburg was back in the game.
"The program has struggled a bit in the past couple of years and I'm not sure if these girls have ever had that kind of lead at halftime before,'' Knights coach Josh Hunt said. "But I'm proud of the way we played. We made enough plays to win the game."
Woods added 12 points for the Knights, who also got nine points from Johnson.
"We're awfully young with four sophomores and a freshman in the starting lineup,' Hunt said. "It's a slow process and it will take awhile, but we'll get there.''
Lealaimatafao led all scorers with 16 points.
Massac County 38, Okawville 10
The offensive woes of the Lady Rockets continued in a 30-point loss to the Class 3A Lady Patriots.
Held to just a combined 26 points in tournament losses to Mount Vernon and Mascoutah, Okawville couldn't get anything to fall for the third straight game.
Sophomore Jessie Klasing led the Lady Rockets (1-4) with four points.
Sophomore Jessie Klasing topped Massac County (3-0) with 12 points.