It was a battle of Indians on Friday night in the semifinals of the Mid-America Classic.
The Manhattan High girls’ basketball team managed to hold on and beat the Andale Indians 49-41 to advance to the tournament championship game Saturday.
Manhattan hadn’t faced an undefeated team since November on opening night in Derby.
In the winner’s bracket of the Classic in McPherson, Manhattan had the chance to play two of them, starting with top-seeded Andale in the semifinals in McPherson on Friday.
Manhattan passed that test, winning 49-41 and earning a date against the second-seeded Olathe South Falcons in the championship game.
Darby Price and Caroline Ballard each scored 13 points in the win, making up for the scoring they didn’t get from Elayna Spilker, who continues to sit with a foot injury she sustained against Washburn Rural last week.
In addition to providing the bulk of the Indians’ scoring, both Ballard and Price finished the night with double-doubles, with Price grabbing 15 rebounds and Ballard with 10.
Manhattan was able to take advantage of a size advantage against Andale, undefeated in Class 4A, by outrebounding the Indians 44-24. Andale also committed eight more fouls trying to contain Price and Ballard.
Manhattan didn’t have outrageous shooting numbers, but managed to contain Andale, especially in the second half. Andale finished the night shooting 25 percent from the floor, with Manhattan at 39 percent.
Manhattan watched Andale take an 18-10 lead in the first quarter, only to come roaring back in the second, going on a 22-2 run over the next two quarters to take control. Manhattan outscored Andale 12-3 in the second and 14-6 in the third.
Manhattan shot 16 of 21 from the charity stripe, helping seal the win. Andale shot a good percentage, finishing 9 of 11, but didn’t get there often enough.