Class 5A Girls State Basketball Tournament
Pleasant Valley 43, West Des Moines Valley 28
Pleasant Valley is still unbeaten and still on track to win a state championship.
The top-seeded Spartans shut down West Des Moines Valley with their suffocating zone defense and beat the eighth-seeded Tigers 43-28 to advance to the Class 5A semifinals.
Pleasant Valley made five of its first seven shots and jumping to a 14-3 lead and held Valley at bay the rest of the way, limiting the Tigers to nine field goals. It was the 14th time the Spartans have held an opponent to fewer than 30 points. They beat Valley 32-31 in a regular-season matchup back in December.
Halle Vice, who has signed to play at Marquette next season, led Pleasant Valley with 18 points and pulled down six rebounds. Jessie Clemons added 11 points, Reagan Pagniano scored eight and Quinn Vice finished with six to go with four rebounds, two blocks and two steals.
PV shot 48.4 percent for the game with its patient offense and went 5-for-8 from 3-point range.
Elise Jaeger led Valley with eight points, nine rebounds, three steals and two assists. Brynne Katcher also scored eight for the Tigers and Elan Litt had six. The Tigers missed eight of their first nine shots and struggled to get anything going on offense.
Leading 24-16 at halftime, Pleasant Valley scored the first seven points of the second half to go up 31-16 and stayed safely ahead the rest of the way.
Valley had a chance to make things interesting early in the fourth quarter after Jaeger sank two free throws and flipped in a shot off the glass to cut the lead to 37-28. A little more than a minute later, the Tigers missed an open 3-point shot that would have cut the lead to six, Vice buried a 3 from the right corner for a 40-28 lead and the Tigers never scored again.
Pleasant Valley, which starts three sophomores and a junior alongside Halle Vice, will take a 24-0 record into a semifinal game at 11:45 a.m. Thursday. Valley, in the tournament for the 16th time, finishes 15-9.