Last year, Broome’s girls had to endure an hour and a half bus ride home after Eau Claire thumped them 80-44 in the third round of the 2A state playoffs.
The Lady Centurions returned the favor on Saturday night.
Broome used a strong second quarter to beat visiting Eau Claire 70-58 in a second-round game to pick up its 13th straight win. The Lady Centurions will host Keenan in the third round at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
“It was a long and somewhat sad ride home last year (after the loss to Eau Claire),” Broome coach Kim Goode said. “We made some adjustments in our defense in the second quarter tonight, and that allowed us to be able to do some things going into halftime. We ended the half pretty good.”
Trailing 24-21 early in the second quarter, the Lady Centurions (23-3) ended the quarter on a 22-2 run. Broome led 40-26 at the break.
Broome’s Madison Floyd hit a 3-pointer and was fouled on the shot, leading to a four-point play and 30-26 lead with 2:52 left in the second.
Mikalia Lyles scored 23 points to lead Broome, while Jada Wallace added 21 and 11 rebounds.
“I know a lot of people say that we don’t play nobody, but we played a big team tonight and we came out and did what we needed to do,” said Lyles, a senior. “We knew it was going to be a real physical game.”
Eau Claire (18-6) pulled to within 63-55 after a Moniquia Davis layup with 3:06 remaining in the game.
Tamyra Bell hit a short jumper with 1:28 left and Wallace hit three free throws late to ice the game for Broome.
“I believe we were all ready tonight,” said Wallace, a freshman. “This win feels real good, because it means we are one step closer to our goal, and that’s state.”
Bell and Floyd each ended with 13 points for the Lady Centurions.
Broome is one win away from a trip to the upper state championship at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Bi-Lo Center.
“These young ladies worked hard tonight,” Goode said. “We rebounded well and hit big free throws and those are things that always lead to good things in the end.”