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PHS FALLS IN HARD-FOUGHT BOUT: Paxton surges late to knock off No. 2-ranked Lady Eagles

The No. 2-ranked Pleasant Home Lady Eagles put up a courageous fight, but fell to the Paxton Lady Bobcats 52-45 on Thursday night in Pleasant Home.

Paxton got on the board first, but Bella Worley quickly tied the game with a bucket.

The Lady Bobcats then took a 5-2 lead before River Baldwin cut it to 5-4 with a pair of free throws.

Following the free throws, Paxton went down the court and drained a 3-pointer to go up 8-4.

Baldwin and Amy Kate Bulger picked up points to close out the period, but Paxton was on top 11-8.

Baldwin and Bulger continued to pick up points for the Lady Eagles in the second period, but the Lady Bobcats took a 27-21 lead into halftime.

Baldwin opened up the third period with a bucket to cut the lead down to 27-23 and then a free throw from Bulger cut the Paxton lead down to 27-24.

Pleasant Home cut the lead down to two points with a big bucket from Baldwin.

However, Paxton was up 43-39 heading into the final period.

Pleasant Home started the fourth period strong with buckets from Hope Gunter and Baldwin that cut the Paxton lead down to 44-43.

The Paxton defense then stepped up and limited the Lady Eagles to just two points the remainder of the game as they pulled away for a 52-45 win.

Baldwin led the Lady Eagles with 23 points, 12 rebounds, eight blocks and seven assists.

“I told the girls that it’s games like this that really help and prepare us a lot better,” Pleasant Home head coach Tony Wilson said. “Paxton has a real good ball club. The girls stayed in it enough that we had a chance to win the ball game. We never got down and out. I don’t think they ever took a double-digit lead. I knew it was going to be tough coming in. We had a little trouble containing their shooters. We tried a little zone and we tried a little man. Hats off to them because they can shoot the ball really well, but we didn’t execute like we should have tonight on offense. We were in a froze-up kind of mode, I guess you would say.”