Natalie Gremaud had seen about enough.
Perryville was clinging to a 23-19 lead early against Meadow Heights in the third period of its Kelso Supply Holiday Tournament fifth-place game Saturday at the Show Me Center. Gremaud put back a missed a free throw and, following a turnover, hit a 3-pointer from the wing to spark a 6-0 run, and the Pirates made the cushion stand as they pulled away to a 44-28 victory.
Sixth-seeded Perryville (5-3) needed a last-second prayer to edge the Panthers 50-48 back on Dec. 15 and didn't want to tempt fate again with the fifth-seeded Panthers (3-7).
"We wanted to prove that we were the better team, and being the lower seed, we thought we deserved a higher seed than Meadow Heights, and I think we proved that," said Gremaud, who led all scorers with 16 points.
Meadow Heights, which suited up just five players because of an injury to Hayley Thorne, pulled within 32-24 early in the fourth before Gremaud drove the lane for a basket, then converted a nice feed from Libbi Schnurbusch for another hoop to bump the lead back to double digits.
"She will try to do everything to win because she's got that winning attitude," Perryville coach Vicki Lohmann said. "In the third and fourth quarter, I thought she really stepped it up."
Gremaud and teammate Desiree Brown also controlled the boards against the smaller Panthers.
"My rebounding the past couple days hasn't been that good," Brown said. "I wanted to step it up and bring the ball down and get more rebounds."
"She is a rebounding monster," Gremaud said of Brown. "When she rebounds, it seems like it's contagious. Everybody rebounds."
Meadow Heights coach Mark Verticchio noted the absence of Thorne hurt his squad.
"With Haley, that's a different game right there," he said. "She averages around 20 rebounds a game. She clears the boards -- and scores."
Playing its third game in five days didn't help his depleted roster.
"We're tired," he said. "For five girls to give that type of effort ... I'm real proud of the way they played."
Emma Cook led Meadow Heights with 13 points.
|Perryville||10 11 8 15 -- 44|
|Meadow Hts||9 6 4 9 -- 28|
PERRYVILLE (44) -- Natalie Gremaud 16, Ahnie Hoff 2, Kaycee Erzfeld 5, Allison Moldenhauer 5, Aimee More 1, Brooke Moll 6, Desiree Brown 9. FG: 15, FT: 9-13, F: 10. (3-pointers: Gremaud 3, Erzfeld 1, Moldenhauer 1. Fouled out: none).
MEADOW HEIGHTS (28) -- Emma Cook 13, Kiana Hotop 2, Taylor Cureton 11, Kylee Whitener 2. FG: 9, FT: 8-10, F: 14. (3-pointers: Cook 1, Cureton 1. Fouled out: none.)