Leake Academy’s Molly Davis passes the ball against Kirk Academy on Saturday in the finals of the MAIS Overall Tournament at Mississippi College.

Photo by Robbie Robertson
Leake Academy’s Molly Davis passes the ball against Kirk Academy on Saturday in the finals of the MAIS Overall Tournament at Mississippi College. Photo by Robbie Robertson
CLINTON - Well, the Leake Academy Lady Rebels’ season didn’t end on a winning note Saturday here in the finals of the MAIS Overall State Tournament.

The Lady Rebels dropped a 48-41 to Kirk Academy, the same team they beat 35-31 just the week before in the Class AAA Girls State Tournament. The two teams met five times during the season. They split in the regular season. Leake Academy beat Kirk for the North State and State title, and Kirk won the Overall.

The Overall was held at Mississippi College.

Leake Academy vs. Kirk has become one of the top rivalries in MAIS girls basketball. Last year, it was Kirk that defeated the Lady Rebels in the North State and State finals. Last week’s loss to Leake in the State finals was a stinking defeat for the Raiderettes. They were on a mission when they took the floor vs. Leake Academy on Saturday.

“It’s hard to beat a good team three times in a row,” Leake Academy Coach Amanda Hatch said. “That’s the thing about the Overall; everybody but one team finishes with a loss. We had a good season and accomplished some things. We have a lot to be proud of.”

The Lady Rebels finished with a 38-4 record. They have now won the state championship in their classification 10-of-the-last-12 years.

 In addition to winning the North State and State championships, Leake Academy ended Jackson Academy’s 87-game winning streak over Mississippi Independent Schools Association teams. The two teams met in the semifinals of the Overall with the Lady Rebels winning 54-37

“We beat them in the Canton Academy tournament back in 2015, and we beat them on Friday,” Hatch said. “They won 87 in a row in between. It was a big win. They were calling it their bookend losses because their streak started after a loss to us, and was ended with a loss to Leake.”


Lady Rebels 54

Jackson Academy 37

The Lady Rebels took control of the game in the third quarter.

Leake Academy led 13-12 after the first quarter. Both teams scored nine points in the second quarter and Leake Academy led 22-21 at the half.

The Lady Rebels went up 26-23 with 5:17 left in the third quarter. Then in the next two minutes, the Lady Rebels moved ahead by 10, thanks to two three-point shots by Sydni Tangle and another by Molly Davis. That put the Lady Rebels up 35-25 with 2:08 left in the quarter. Both teams scored in the time remaining and the Lady Rebels carried a 37-27 lead into the final quarter.

Jackson Academy pulled to within six points early in the fourth quarter but that would be as close as they would come as the Lady Rebels held on for the victory.

Tangle led with 16 points while Hannah Smith scored 14. Clancy Scott and Davis each scored eight points while Kelsey Tangle scored six.


Kirk Academy 48

Lady Rebels 41

Again, the third quarter played a big part in the game; only this time, not for the Lady Rebels.

Leake Academy led 13-10 after the first quarter. The Lady Rebels outpointed Kirk Academy 9-7 in the second quarter and led 22-17 at the half.

The Raiderettes took over in the third quarter, outscoring the Lady Rebels 14-5. Leading 34-27 heading into the final period, Kirk had a 17-14 scoring edge and took the victory.

Davis led the Lady Rebels with 14 points.

“It’s hard to play two big games back-to-back,” Hatch said. “We didn’t shoot the ball well and they have a good team.

“But we beat the AAA and the AAAA state champions this year, and the Jackson Academy win was big. Our girls have a lot to be proud of for this season.”

Also, all of the Lady Rebels starters from this team are returning. To be continued …