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The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

RBHS varsity girls’ basketball falls to Incarnate Word Academy 65-41 in Final Four

Bailey Blackburn
Malia Chievous (11) quickly runs to the basket against Incarnate Word during the 2024 MSHSAA Show-Me Showdown Class 6 Friday, March 15.

The Lady Bruins failed to defeat Incarnate Word Academy’s Red Knights in 2024 MSHSAA Show-Me Showdown Class 6 by 65-41 Friday, Mar. 15. They had to play against the Cor Jesu Academy’s Chargers today to secure third place in the Final Four. 

Starting for RBHS Friday night was junior guard/forward Malia Chievous, junior guard Elli Porter, sophomore forward Cora Smith, junior guard Mari Miller and sophomore center/forward Jayda Porter. After the Red Knights secured the tipoff, Chevious scored the first two points of the game with a free throw. There were a series of turnovers between the two teams during the first quarter, with neither being able to score. Incarnate Word pulled ahead with multiple layups when the Bruins provided little defense, however, ending the first quarter 14-6.

The varsity girls already faced disadvantages going into the game, with both junior forward Tylor McCallister and senior guard Lexi Butts tearing their ACLs in the weeks leading up to the showdown. In addition to facing an opponent who has gone 29-0 this season, Head Coach Jill Nagel said it was extremely challenging having to try and make up for the loss in players in the short time span of a week. 

“I think the biggest struggle is trying to reinvent ourselves. The two players that we lost make up 45 minutes a game, [and] there’s a rotation involved,” Nagel said. “That has all gotten scrambled for us in the last week, and [when] you’re playing a team on a 129 game winning streak, I would say that’s putting yourself behind the 8-ball.”

Jayda Porter kicked off the second quarter with a rebound, followed by a two-pointer from Chievous. After a missed pass and a foul from RBHS, Incarnate Word scored two three-pointers in a row. The Bruins called a time-out with three minutes left, yet the Red Knights still managed to pull ahead 29-11 going into halftime. 

We love a good third quarter, [it’s] usually our best one. We like to come out hot and knock down some tough shots. We really focused after halftime, especially since the first half wasn’t our best — we wanted to get back in the game.”

— junior guard/forward Malia Chievous

The varsity girls were able to gain some momentum at the start of the third quarter. Chevious once again scored the first point, followed by a block by Miller that led to junior guard Elli Porter shooting a clean three-pointer. In addition, the Bruins were somewhat able to maintain their standing after scoring four free throws in the face of multiple fouls by the Red Knights. Chievous said the team was able to step up during the third quarter in particular, concentrating on closing the score gap in the second half.

“We love a good third quarter, [it’s] usually our best one,” Chievous said. “We like to come out hot and knock down some tough shots. We really focused after halftime, especially since the first half wasn’t our best — we wanted to get back in the game.” 

Incarnate Word was able to swiftly gain footing against the Bruins after their first points, however, consistently scoring two-pointers alongside two three-pointers to end the third quarter 40-24.

Upon Miller’s foul on the Red Knights, Incarnate Word scored the first points of the fourth quarter, followed by multiple layups. Jayda Porter sank a free-throw after being fouled on during her layup, but the Bruins began to lack strategy in their passes and their defense became wide open. Junior forward Nyah Strupp landed a solid three-pointer, however, followed by Elli Porter’s two-pointer and free throw that brought the final score to 65-41. 

Both Jayda and Elli Porter were on the court for almost the entirety of the game, racking up 29.29 and 29.28 minutes respectively. Despite having experience doing so multiple times this season, the former said it was more challenging with Friday’s game because of the Red Knight’s fast-paced style.

“We faced a really talented team and some tough calls from the referees,” Jayda Porter said. “I’d say we were pretty tough mentally considering the situation.”

Having lost against Incarnate Word, the Bruins are set to play Cor Jesu Academy March 16 for a third place finish. Heading into Saturday’s game, Coach Nagel said she hopes this loss will further teach the team the importance of pushing through adversity and supporting each other through it.

“It’s a long season, and they’ve stayed together and grown the whole way,” Nagel said. “I just want to see them continue to fight for each other and go out on top. […] I’m extremely proud of what these kids have done. We had a great week of practice, and we are [going to] finish it the right way.”

Did you support the Lady Bruins in the student section Friday night? Let us know in the comments below. 



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About the Contributors
McKenna Parker
McKenna Parker, Features Editor
Senior McKenna Parker is the Features Editor for Southpaw and Bearing News. She is also a member of NHS and Elementary United. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, writing, reading, and spending time with family and friends.
Julia Kim
Julia Kim, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Senior Julia Kim is the co-editor-in-chief and Op/Ed editor for Southpaw and Bearing News. They are also co-president of Ethics Bowl and volunteer as a writer for The Xinsheng Project. In their free time, Julia likes to listen to music, read books and learn K-Pop dances.
Bailey Blackburn
Bailey Blackburn, Photo Editor
Senior Bailey Blackburn is the photo editor for Southpaw and Bearing News. She is also the president of Film Club and is on the RBHS Cross Country and Track and Field team. In her free time she enjoys reading, listening to music, and painting.

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