In the finals of the City of Metropolis tournament, Vienna came away with a hard-fought 51-42 win.

Things looked promising for another stem-winder Monday night, Jan. 3, at Vienna as Massac County’s Lady Patriots made the trip to Johnson County.

Then “the bug” hit and sent a short-handed ladies team into battle. But no one told the girls they were in trouble, and the end result was a gratifying 56-51 team win.

Brooklyn Burnett had the best game of her injury-fraught high school career with a sparkling 24-point performance. Elise Coakley was right on her heels with 17, but all in all, it was a team effort that pulled the Lady Patriots through.

Once again, the talented young duo of freshman Ayva Rush and sophomore Emmy Vinson wielded the biggest sticks for Vienna.

Vienna’s ball pressure forced some wayward passes by Massac resulting in a couple of “mini-runs” by Vienna and an “over-the-top” ending to a great ball game. With 20 seconds left on the clock, Vienna’s Haylie Oliver scored on a pretty “up and under” move at the basket cutting the score to 54-51. Vienna then fouled Massac’s Sophie Bormann with 13 ticks left, and the hi-jinks began.

The Lady Eagles’ veteran coach Rick Metcalf resorted to his bag of tricks, using three consecutive timeouts to “ice” Bormann at the free throw line. All the while, the Vienna student section had taken on the appearance of a dog pound with everyone on their hands and knees barking and howling.

But they don’t call her “the ice lady” just because of her Scandinavian looks. When Bormann was finally handed the ball for real, she didn’t even nick the rim as both shots floated through the nylon … no big deal!

Sometimes it’s a shame somebody has to lose, and this was one of those games. Rush led all scorers with 28, 12 of them coming in the final eight minutes.

The Lady Patriots improved to 10-6 with the win and will host McCracken County and Goreville this week. The Lady Mustangs gallop into Metropolis tonight, Thursday Jan. 6, and Goreville’s Lady Black Cats come prowling into town Saturday, Jan. 8.

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