The Festus Tigers Girls Varsity Basketball team had an exciting week. They took down the Blue Knights on Mondaywith a 57-43 win that featured Josie Allen‘s 1,000th career point. The victory got the Tigers back over .500 on the season and set up a clash against Windsor on Senior Night in Festus. The Lady Tigers pulled that one out as well with a 50-43 victory and strung back-to-back Ws together for the first time since early December.
The game on Monday featured a back-and-forth first half, with the Tigers starting out on top after an 11-6 first quarter, featuring a pair of big threes by Allen. But the Blue Knights would march back into the game in the second, pouring in 15 and holding Festus to just nine. That gave the visitors a 21-20 lead at the half.
The break was kind to the Tigers, because they came out firing in the third quarter. Allen had seven points, including that magical shot that got her to 1,000 points in her High School career. Festus totaled 18 in the frame and kept the Knights at bay, earning their lead back after allowing just nine points. There would be no slowing down either, as the fourth quarter was the highest scoring of the day for the Tigers. They piled on with 19 more and closed out the home win at 57-43.
Allen was marvelous in this one, totaling 22 points to lead all scorers and hit three of six from beyond the arc. The shot that put her into four-digit territory came at the midway point of the third, but represented just how impressive her career has been. What many don’t realize is that Allen missed her entire Freshman year due to injury and then lost many opportunities due to covid-cancelled games in a truncated Sophomore season. She managed to get to 1,000 points in just 61 games and upped her career average to 16.5 PPG. Impressive stuff.
Also making an impact in the win were Ciara McDonald (9 points, 3 steals), Mya Courtois (8 points, 7 rebounds, 4 steals) and Elizabeth Skaggs (7 points, 8 rebounds, 3 steals). It was a solid all-around effort and Head Coach Steve McFarland had high praise for his girls. “I was very proud of the way our team played tonight on both ends of the floor. Offensively, we moved the ball well and were very patient. Defensively we were aggressive and alert.”
Now back over .500, the Tigers were ready to host the Owls on Senior Night three days later, and they didn’t disappoint. Festus was on their game from the start, taking a quick 12-7 lead after the first eight minutes. Then they piled on some more in the second with five points apiece from Allen and McDonald to extend the lead to 26-19 at the break.
After halftime the Tigers kept up their strong play in the third, adding 12 more points (nine of them from Allen), and holding Windsor to just 10. Things got dicey in the fourth though. After leading all game, Festus suddenly found themselves tied with about three minutes remaining. The Owls had pecked their way back into it, but according to Coach McFarland, the Tigers were able hang onto the win with “good ball-handling and some heads-up play to seal the victory.”
He followed up with, “I was proud of our composure tonight. We kept our heads and took control of the game when we needed to.”
Allen led all scorers once again with 23 points on 10-of-19 shooting from the floor and added six rebounds and six steals. Fellow Senior Courtois scored nine points, went 6-of-10 from line and grabbed five rebounds and a pair of steals. McDonald added eight points, Jersey Latham had eight as well with 10 rebounds, five steals and three assists, while Skaggs came off the bench to claim three assists and three steals.
It was a heck of a week for the Tigers, who are currently playing some of their best basketball of the season. They will look to continue their winning ways on Monday when they travel to take on Fox.