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Lady Broncos Grab First Win in MCL Tourney Finale

2022-23 RHS Girls Basketball Team Photo by Jason Drake
2022-23 RHS Girls Basketball Team Photo by Jason Drake

STOCKTON-Harlee Donovan scored 15 points as the Russell Lady Broncos won for the first time this season with a 45-31 win over Plainville in the 11th place game of the Mid-Continent League Tournament Monday afternoon at Stockton High School.

Taylor Birney led the Lady Bronco attack early with four points in the first quarter to help Russell to a 9-6 lead after the opening eight minutes.  Plainville then grabbed the upper hand in the second period as Kadence Bruso accounted for seven of the Lady Cardinals' 17 points, all from the free throw line, but Donovan poured in six points in the paint to keep the game tied 23-23 at intermission.

After Plainville took a 26-23 lead to start the second half, Russell scored the next six points and held a 29-28 advantage after three periods.  The fourth and final quarter belonged to the Lady Broncos who took advantage of numerous Plainville turnovers and fouls and outscored the Lady Cardinals 16-3 to put an end to a 13-game losing streak that dated back to the end of the 2021-22 season and secure the first victory for first-year head coach Tyson Revell.

Donovan missed part of the third quarter after appearing to land hard on her left shoulder but she returned to action and took over the game, scoring nine of her game-high 15 points in the fourth quarter alone.  Birney added 11 points for Russell (1-11, 0-4 MCL).   The Lady Broncos won for the first time since defeating Hill City 53-23 on February 18, 2022.  The Lady Broncos also avenged an earlier 38-35 loss to Plainville (1-11, 0-4 MCL) at the Amos Morris Classic which had snapped a 43-game skid for the Lady Cards.

Bruso led Plainville in scoring with 13 points.  The Lady Bronco defense forced 34 Plainville turnovers while Russell committed just 15.

The Lady Broncos will return to Amos Morris Gymnasium on Tuesday evening, January 24 as part of a doubleheader with the Boys who placed third with a 48-39 victory over Phillipsburg later Monday in WaKeeney as they welcome in Hoxie.  Tip-off for the Girls game is 6 p.m. and the games can be heard on KRSL AM 990/98.1 FM and online at