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03/03/2016 - CLASS A GIRLS BASKETBALL: East Upsets No. 1 SSC On 4th Qtr Rally

By Jeff Motz

Lincoln East found themselves inching closer to taking control of top-ranked South Sioux City at various times Thursday afternoon.

The Spartans got a spark off a Caroline Spethman basket to take control and pulled away with free throws for a 64-56 upset of the Cardinals in the Class A Girls State Basketball Tournament quarterfinals at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

East (21-5) will now play Millard South in Friday's 7pm semifinal.  The Patriots advanced Thursday after beating Papillion-LaVista 63-51.

Trailing 48-45 entering the fourth quarter, the Spartans got two quick baskets, including Grace Barry's dish to Spethman for a 49-48 advantage with 6:27 remaining.  Barry then sank a pair of free throws and scored on a baseline drive to help East to a 53-50 lead.

Spartan forward Regan Sankey then connected on a basket off an offensive rebound, but South Sioux City's Kori Fischer hit a three to pull the Cardinals to within three, 56-53 with 2:24 to play.

Elyssa Jurgens nailed two free throws, then Sankey hit one of two free throws for a 59-53 lead with one minute left.  Fischer then converted on one of two free throws for South Sioux City.  Barry hit two free throws with 52 seconds left, while Addie Roh converted on two more charity tosses.

Roh then blocked a three-point attempt and Barry hit one more free throw to seal the East win.

East's only other lead came in the 1st quarter, leading 17-10 before South Sioux City came roaring back and finished the period on a 11-1 run for a 21-18 lead.

Sankey led East with 19 points, while Jurgens added 16, Roh had 14 and Barry finished with 10 points in the Spartan victory.

Augusta Thramer was the only player in double-figures for South Sioux City, finishing with a game-high 25 points, 23 of which came in the first half.
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