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Bears, Lady Bears Will Complete Regular Basketball Seasons Tonight

The Ava Bears and Lady Bears will travel to Thayer tonight (Thursday) to wrap up the regular basketball season.

The games will begin at 5 p.m. with a junior varsity boys’ game, followed by the varsity girls, and concluding with the varsity boys’ game. There will be no JV girls’ game at Thayer.

This will be the final games of the regular season, with district play to begin on Monday.

The Ava boys enter the SCA contest at Thayer with a conference record of 4-2 after wins over Mtn. Grove and Willow Springs this week. The Bears are 14-9 overall.

The Ava girls will be looking to finish the regular season at an even .500 mark, but will need to get past the tough Lady Bobcats to do so. The Ava girls are currently 11-12 overall and 3-3 in the conference.

The Bears defeated Mtn. Grove 49-42 last Friday night and took a 61-35 win from Willow Springs on Tuesday night. Both games were played on the road.

No individual stats from either of those games were available this week.

The Lady Bears traveled to Blue Eye last Thursday night and lost in nonconference play, 46-31. Hannah Johnson paced the Ava girls with 10 points and was the only Ava player in double figures.

Bailey Lee had nine points for Ava, including two baskets from 3-point range.

It was confirmed this week that Lee’s six 3-point baskets against Norwood last week put her in the record book, tying Kelli Bilyeu who had six 3-pointers against Licking in the 2009-10 season.

Others scoring for Ava at Blue Eye were Erica Croney 5, Maison Bovard 4 and Jacey Swofford 2.

The Lady Bears were outscored 13-4 in the second quarter at Blue Eye and trailed 21-9 at halftime.

The girls traveled to Forsyth on Friday night to play a game that was postponed on Jan. 29. Ava jumped out to a 27-16 halftime lead and defeated the Lady Panthers 52-46.

Swofford led Ava with 12 points and Johnson and Bovard added 10 apiece. Lee had 9, Croney 8, and Shelby Campbell 3 points to round out Ava’s scoring.

Kaitlyn Berry had 23 points for Forsyth.

The Ava ladies traveled to Willow Springs on Monday night and took one on the chin, 51-29, in conference play.

Willow Springs led the Ava Lady Bears 21-14 at the half, and continued to spread the margin in the second half.

Lee led the Ava girls with 12 points and Campbell and Swofford had 5 each. Johnson scored 4 and Croney 3.

Kyndall Bunch had 19 points for the Willow Springs Lady Bears.

The Bears and Lady Bears will begin play next week in the Class 3, District 11 Tournament at Hollister.

The Lady Bears are seeded fifth and will play Springfield Catholic in first-round action on Monday, at 5:30. With a win the girls would play top seed Fair Grove at 6 o’clock Wednesday night, Feb. 20.

The Ava boys are seeded fourth and will play Blue Eye in first-round action at 5:30 Tuesday, Feb. 19.

With a win, the Bears would face top-ranked Strafford at 6 o’clock Thursday, Feb. 21.

The girls’ championship will be decided at 3 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 23 and the boys’ championship game will be at 5 p.m. the same day.