JAY — It was early, but Colcord had to be feeling pretty spry. After all, at the midway mark of the first quarter, Colcord had a lead — albeit a small lead — against Class 3A No. 4 Sequoyah.
Then Audrey Ballou caught fire and that was it.
The senior forward buried three straight 3-pointers, broke an early 8-all tie and guided Sequoyah on a 9-0 run as the Lady Indians would ultimately coast to a 58-26 victory in the semifinals of the Tri-State Classic at Bulldog Arena on Friday night.
"I'm not looking at whether we're winning big or anything. I just want the effort," Sequoyah coach Larry Callison said. "And tonight we had effort."
Sequoyah (13-1) advances to its second straight tournament championship game after winning the Shrine Classic in Muskogee earlier this month. The Lady Indians will take on Tulsa Memorial in the finals on Saturday at 7 p.m. Colcord will be in the third-place game against Kansas.
Colcord will just be happy that Ballou won't be in uniform for Kansas. After missing her first two shots of the game, Ballou connected within close range on her third attempt and then unleashed a long-range assault.
Ballou finished six-of-12 from the field and five-of-nine from beyond the 3-point arc to lead all scorers with 17 points.
"Audra is an excellent offensive player. She can shoot the basketball," said Callison, who also had Loren Young score in double digits with 10 points.
"A lot of colleges are looking at (Audrey)."
With the score knotted at 8 in the first period, Ballou broke the tie and led the Lady Indians to an 18-10 advantage at the end of the first eight minutes. Then Sequoyah overwhelmed Colcord in a 13-5 second quarter to take a 31-15 lead at halftime.
Sequoyah continued the same theme in the second half, outscoring Colcord 13-3 in the third quarter to put the game on ice. Colcord, after a three-of-seven effort from the floor in the first quarter, connected on only three of its next 23 field-goal attempts.
Paige Shelley led Colcord (11-3) with nine points.