By RICK YEARICK and EARL WATT
• Daily Leader
The last time the Lady Mustangs battled the Holcomb Lady Longhorns, Southwestern Heights put the game away early.
But without Deni Jacobs who was nursing a leg injury, and facing a determined Holcomb squad the No. 1 Lady Mustangs were able to hold on for a 4541 win in the Corral Friday.
The Lady Longhorns extended the defense with a full court press most of the game which slowed the vaunted Lady Mustang attack.
The Lady Mustangs found themselves down by their largest first quarter deficit of the season, trailing the Lady Longhorns 16-11.
But the Lady Mustangs started to adjust to the Holcomb press and was able to cut the lead to two points for Holcomb at half, 21-19.
Heights coach Barry Mellen’s halftime adjustments continued to enhance the Lady Mustang performance on the court. The Lady Mustangs erased the deficit and took a 34-31 lead into the fourth quarter.
Cori Sigala helped the Lady Mustangs rally in the third by getting some steals and converting one into a lay-up. The junior came off the bench to help fill the gap left by Jacobs who is expected to return later this season.
Rachel Stout and Sheree Ryan also filled the void by combining to score 14 points along with Sigala.
The Lady Mustangs were able to avoid a Holcomb rally in the fourth and withstand the Lady Longhorn pressure for the 45-41 win in the closest Hi-Plains League game for the Lady Mustangs all season.
Heidi Brown led the Lady Mustangs with 12 points, including two three pointers, and Kathy Eakes had eight. Lindsay Garinger and Britny Butler combined for 11.
The Lady Mustangs got little rest after the Holcomb win. They traveled to Medicine Lodge for a Saturday night game. Tuesday, Southwestern Heights will travel to Meade to face the arch rival Lady Buffaloes.