By THE HERALD-WHIG
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Demond Dade saw a sign Friday night that convinced him the Quincy High School girls basketball team is finally coming of age.
Trailing by six points at the end of three quarters and frustrated by the way the game was being officiated, the Blue Devils overcame everything to go on a 20-4 run and close out a 53-43 victory Friday over Eureka in the semifinals of the State Farm Holiday Hoops Invitational at Jefferson City Helias' Fieldhouse.
"They quit worrying about how the game was being called and starting listening to the coaches about how we wanted things done," Quincy coach Demond Dade said. "They started playing their game."
Quincy (9-5) carries a five-game winning streak into Saturday's championship at 4:45 p.m. against St. Jospeh (Mo.) Benton at Jefferson City High School, and Dade hopes to have senior forward Hannah Reller back in the lineup.
Reller sat out Friday's game with concussion symptoms and will be re-evaluated Saturday.
"There's a lot of stuff she does that is hard to replace," Dade said. "It's hard to take the court without one of your warriors with you."
After building a seven-point lead in the first quarter, the Blue Devils slowly saw it disappear over a 16-minute stretch. Still, Dade was confident they could overcome their struggles.
"I told them, ‘We have plenty of time,'" Dade said. "I knew we could do this."
The closing run was sparked by baskets by Jordan Fletcher and Aray'ia Dade had 16 points and nine rebounds apiece.
"Each time, we're finding a little different way to get it done," Demond Dade said. "The best part of that is they're learning how to win."
Rock Falls 49, Central-Southeastern 36: Rock Falls held the Lady Panthers scoreless in the first quarter and limited them to 10 in the second quarter en route to the win in the seventh-place consolation game of the State Farm Holiday Classic in Bloomington.
The Rocks built a 26-10 halftime lead and never relinquished control. Madison Steinkamp scored 12 points and Kara Twaddell added 11 for C-SE (4-10).
Griggsville-Perry 86, Greenview 43: A fast start by the Tornadoes led to a 21-5 lead at the end of the first quarter. They never gave up the lead and inished pool play at the Carrollton Holiday Tournament 3-0. The Tornadoes will play Carrollton for the championship at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.
Griggsville-Perry improved to 4-8 overall while Greenview fell to 1-12.
Dryden Craven scored 25 points and went 8 of 8 from the free throw line to lead Griggsville-Perry. Levi King added 16 points for the Tornadoes, and Hayden Bradshaw chipped in 14.
Lincoln Tournament: Quincy High School placed fourth out of 21 teams in Lincoln, Ill.
Dakota Downs placed first at 170 pounds for the Blue Devils.
Notching second-place finishes for QHS were Garrad Straube (120) and Michael Peters (126).
Trevor Schutte (106) and Jaydon Summy (195) garnered third-place finishes. Matt Bilgri took fifth at 145, and Jimmy Tedeschi (132), Stephen Sharp (138) and Josh Culp (160) placed eighth for QHS.