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Niangua's Seniors shine through two wins


Friday, Feb. 3, was a big night for Niangua; not only was it a doubleheader as both boys and girls basketball teams were playing against the Fair Play Hornets, but it was also Senior Night. The games began with the gym full, and after a rockin' national anthem, the crowd's excitement was on a high.

Fans of the Niangua Cardinals were pleased to see both teams play hard and beat Fair Play. The Lady Cardinals won with a final score of 46-37. The Boys team won against the Hornets 65-38.

"Well, we had four school days in the last 14 days because of the snow. And we played in spurts because we were out of shape," reflected Lady Cardinals Coach and Principal for Niangua Schools, Clint Gazette. "But I have two seniors and a junior who are 100% ready to play. And they still made some mistakes. But, I think the one thing that really made a difference was we played a good defense most of the game, and rebounded against a team that was bigger and stronger."

After the Cardinals played, Coach Kalem Copling for the Boys' basketball team said, "I thought tonight was a great night for us. We played hard the entire time. I got seniors to score buckets, which were great for the crowd. Great for them to see that."

After the games, Niangua schools held one last evening ceremony, where they honored the winter sports seniors.

Ivy Vestal- Cheer

Kylah Miller- Cheer

Ashley Stephens- Band

Evan Marchicello- Band

Alijah Donaldson- Boys Basketball

Brayden Johnston- Boys Basketball

Ali Petty- Girl's Basketball

Addison Terry - Girl's Basketball and Cheer

Both Coaches also shared their thoughts regarding their seniors. Coach Gazette stated, "I told the kids in the locker room that if they wanted to see the definition of a teammate, they needed to look at our two seniors, Ali Petty and Addison Terry, who played for me for seven years. They weren't in high school for seven years obviously. But they sat on the bench their first year and played a little bit. They played a little during their sophomore year but were here for everything. Every single thing, They were here all summer. They were here at every practice. They were here for open gyms. And they had to sit there and bide their time until they were juniors. Not everybody's given something. Those two earned every award they have on their jackets. They are two of the best teammates as far as what the other kids can look at if they want a role model."

Coach Copling also beamed with pride, "Brayden Johnston has been a staple of our program for the last four years. He does a lot. He's always been a great hard worker in the gym all summer. Elijah Donaldson is new this year. He did great in learning how to play and how to be a part of this program. He's come a long way from when he first started."

Stats for the games are as follows: 


#3 Freshman Josie Desha scored 12 points- one free throw, four 2-pointers, and one 3-pointer.

#13 Freshman Ashleigh Vestal scored 3 points- one free throw and one 2-pointer.

#15 Senior Addison Terry scored 1 point- one free throw.

#23 Junior Ashtyn Callaway scored 19 points- two free throws, four 2-pointers, and three 3-pointers.

#30 Senior Allie Petty scored 9 points- two free throws, two 2-pointers, and one 3-pointer.

#33 Freshman Katie Dixon scored 2 points- one 2-pointer.


#11 Senior Brayden Johnston scored 14 points- one free throw, five 2-pointers, and one 3-pointer.

#13 Junior Evan Kochs scored 12 points- three 2-pointers and two 3-pointers.

#20 Junior Ethan Scheetz scored 23 points- six free throws, seven 2-pointers, and one 3-pointer.

#21 Sophomore Travis Dixon scored 1 point- one free throw.

#41 Junior Clayton Henderson scored 5 points- one 2-pointer and one 3-pointer.

#42 Senior Alijah Donaldson scored 8 points- four 2-pointers.

#45 Junior Hunter Cantrell scored 2 points- one 2-pointer.

Both teams faced Bradleyville teams on Tuesday, Feb. 7. and the School of the Ozarks on Thursday, Feb. 9. As of the writing of this article, the Lady Cardinals are 10-11, and the Cardinals are 15-8.


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