Hillsboro girls make it the state finals!

Turning defense into a weapon, the Hillsboro girls simply dismantled the No. 1 seeded squad from Neodesha, 57-31, in the semifinals of the Class 3A state tournament in Hutchinson on Friday night.

The Trojans jumped to an 8-2 lead at the start, but led only 14-13 after one quarter. After Neodesha tied the game with a free throw to start the second quarter, Hillsboro launched an 11-0 run to take command of the contest. By halftime the score was 26-18.

But the Trojans kicked up their game one notch further in the second half, particularly on the defensive end and led 44-27 after three quarters. The blitzkrieg continued through the final period on the way to the 26-point victory margin.

Hillsboro limited Neodesha to 6-for-31 shooting in the second half (19 percent) and 13-55 (24 percent) for the game.

Meanwhile, the Trojans made nearly 48 percent of their shots (20-42). JuliAnne Chisholm led the attack with 21 points and Tina Frick added 11.

With the victory, Hillsboro (22-3) advances to the championship game at 4 p.m. Saturday against Salina Sacred Heart.

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