Haylee Rucker's strong finish keys host team's victory over #4 seed in weather-delayed 2018 Carroll-Livingston Activity Association high school basketball tourney. Top-seeded Southwest Livingston squads roll easily into championship semis

TINA, Mo. — While the league’s regular-season champions – including the back-at-full-strength Southwest Livingston girls – rolled merrily into the championship semifinals, along with the defending boys’ champs, the host Tina-Avalon Lady Dragons helped boost the gate for Friday night’s play in the 2018 Carroll-Livingston Activity Association (CLAA) high school basketball tournament.
Wednesday’s second and final night of quarterfinals play in the once-delayed league tourney began with a thriller which finally ended up belonging to fifth-seeded Tina-Avalon, 46-44 over the fourth-seeded Hale-Bosworth Lady Cardinals.
The as-anticipated close duel went the hosts’ way on the last two of Haylee Rucker’s team-high 17 points, which gave the Lady Dragons a 16-14 edge in the last stanza after the clubs were knotted at 30-30 after three. Rucker scored half of her team’s tallies in the closing segment. Hayes Heussner’s 14 points paced Hale-Bosworth .
That earned the Tina-Avalon girls a shot at top-seeded Southwest Livingston Friday at 4:30 p.m. Southwest Livingston’s Lady Wildcats, with recently-ill star Kaylie Campbell scoring 18 points return to action in support of Kortlyn Rounkles’ 34, crushed Mendon: Northwestern 87-41 Wednesday.
Southwest Livingston’s No. 1-seeded boys had a similarly-comfortable debut in the tourney, piling up a 95-54 margin over Tina-Avalon behind 30 Wyatt Maddux markers in Wednesday’s finale.
Earlier in the evening, fourth-seeded Northwestern sustained its potential to repeat as CLAA tourney champion with a Wade Adams-led 96-69 reversal of Hale-Bosworth. Adams produced the tourney’s second 40-points-plus performance already, netting 43.
As a result of Wednesday’s action, the semifinal pairings on both the championship and consolation sides of the CLAA bracket are set.
Friday night’s championship-side play at Tina-Avalon School will go in this sequence: 4:30 p.m. – Southwest Livingston girls vs. Tina-Avalon; 5:45 – Southwest Livingston boys vs. Northwestern; 7:00 – #2 seed Norborne girls vs. #3 Hardin-Central; and 8:15 – #2 seed Brunswick boys vs. #3 Keytesville. The listed tipoff times, naturally, are approximate, depending on the length of the preceding games.
With Monday’s weather-related postponement, Thursday night now is consolation semifinals night. The schedule shapes up like this: 4:30 – Brunswick vs. Keytesville girls; 5:45 – Norborne vs. Hardin-Central boys; 7:00 – Hale-Bosworth vs. Northwestern girls; and 8:15 – Hale-Bosworth vs. Tina-Avalon boys.
CLAA officials on Wednesday set Saturday’s expanded schedule of six “trophy-round” games to follow this schedule: 12:30 p.m. – Boys’ consolation game; 2:00 – girls’ consolation game; 3:30 – girls’ third-place game; 5:00 – boys’ third-place game; 6:30 – Girls’ championship game; 8:00 p.m. – Boys’ championship game. Barring further interference from the weather, the last three games will be at their original times, with the earlier three bumped back from their normal Friday night slots and the order of the consolation games flip-flopped.