Though only pride was on the line in the final tune-up game before their respective district Championship games later this week, Plainview and Dickson combined for a showcase in fast-paced, physical basketball Tuesday night at the Plainview Activity Center.

Though only pride was on the line in the final tune-up game before their respective district Championship games later this week, Plainview and Dickson combined for a showcase in fast-paced, physical basketball Tuesday night at the Plainview Activity Center.

After three and half quarters of break-neck basketball, Amiya Howard and Plainview were able to find another gear, outpacing Dickson for a 63-52 win.

Plainview won the tip, and Howard’s layup on the first possession of the game gave the Lady Indians a lead they would never surrender. But Dickson constantly fought back, finding production in unlikely places.

Despite being outsized and overmatched, with senior Clary Donica wearing warmups as she rested on the bench, the Lady Comets rose to the occasion as freshman Makayla Smith battled down low for 13 gritty points. 

Dickson’s youth movement, made up of sophomore Sienna Young, sophomore Jadyn Williams, sophomore Hailey Davis and freshman Makayla Smith combined for 49 points in the loss. 

“Tonight really showed that we got some kids that can flat out score,” Dickson coach Wesley Moore said. 

“Not having Clary on the court, they understood they had to step up. We fell short. We had 30 turnovers, amd that’ll hurt any team.”

Dickson wasn’t the only team playing short of full strength.

After separating her shoulder one week before the playoffs, Plainview guard Anna Simmons, sporting a sling, watched the action from the bench.

With Simmons out for the playoffs, Coach Mike Dooney said it’s imperative for his other guards to step up entering District and Regionals.

On Tuesday night, Amiya Howard did just that, leading all scorers with 19 points.

“It’s absolutely brutal to lose (Anna Simmons) a week before the playoffs,” Dooney said. 

“She’s our leading scorer and shot taker. Amiya Howard has put a lot of that load on her shoulders. We need the other guards to step up if we want any chance of making a run in the playoffs.”

Plainview built their lead to as many as 28-15 in the second quarter, but Smith and  sophomore Jadyn Williams led a 10-1 rally to turn the blow-out into a four-point game in the closing minutes of the first half.

Despite the win, Dooney’s goal for the ngiht was to execute from close range and dominate the rebounding boards as they head into the playoffs.

“We put them on the line too much,” he said. “Our goal tonight was to hit easy bumps from close range and win the rebounding battle. I don’t think we accomplished our goal tonight. We gotta make those shots come the playoffs ” 

In the third, Plainview returned to form, forcing turnovers and finding easy buckets in transition to take a 46-36 lead heading into the fourth.

In the fourth, Howard racked up eight points down the stretch to put the Lady Comets away and seal the 63-52 win.

Plainview’s Emilee Hudson scored nine points and Madeline Williams scored eight points in the win.

Dickson’s Makayla Smith and Hailey Davis each scored 13 points to lead the Lady Comets in scoring. Sienna Young scored 12 points and Jadyn Williams finished with 11 points on the night.

Dickson (9-13) will return to action 6:30 p.m. Saturday in the Class 3A District-1 Championship game against No. 6  Washington in Washington. 

Plainview (14-9) will host Tuttle (12-10) in the Class 4A District 8 championship game 6:30 p.m. Friday at home with the boys to follow afterwards.