Central Arkansas Christian’s Lady Mustangs won their opener in the Spa City Shootout in Hot Springs on Friday and faced Little Rock Christian in Saturday’s semifinals.

Early deadlines associated with the New Year’s holiday kept the Monitor from updating that result, as well as Monday’s championship or third-place game, but the Lady Mustangs rolled over LR Christian on Dec. 3, 61-31. The CAC-LRC survivor was to face the winner of Malvern and Hot Springs in Monday’s Spa City Shootout championship.

"I wouldn’t mind getting a shot at Malvern before the conference season," CAC coach Steve Quattlebaum said Saturday morning.

Malvern won all three meetings between the two last year and went on to win the Class 4A state championship.

CAC beat Lake Hamilton in the opening round of the Spa City tournament at Summit Arena, 60-52.

Quattlebaum said he had been a bit concerned heading in, but the Lady Mustangs led by 10 after the first quarter, 12 at halftime and by 17 in the third before the Lady Wolves took advantage of some CAC mistakes to cut the deficit to single digits.

"We turned it over four straight times; they shot layups and we fouled them and they made free throws twice for three-point plays," he said. "But we did a good job hitting free throws in the fourth quarter."

Chloe Elkins made four of four and Falan Miller hit a couple of big ones down the stretch.

"Halfway through the fourth, we sort of lost focus and turned the ball over some," Qiattlebaum said. "They cut it to six at one point.

CAC improved to 8-1.

Sydnie Jones led the Lady Mustangs with 20 points, although Quattlebaum said she didn’t play very well. She is a quiet, consistent performer. Miller added 17, including 10 in the first quarter.

Sophomore guard Brittney Higgins hit a pair of 3s in the first quarter that helped CAC get off to a good start.

The Lady Mustangs were scheduled to play host to Malvern on Monday, Jan. 6, to open 7-4A conference play, but that game has been postponed until Feb. 6. Instead, they’ll begin league play at Nashville on Tuesday, Jan. 7, giving them a chance to get back in the school routine following the Christmas break.

"Nashville has their best player from last year back, but they’re probably not quite as good as they were," Quattlebaum said. "They should be fighting for that third or fourth spot."


Off to consolation bracket

Central Arkansas Christian’s boys fell to Lake Hamilton in Friday’s opening round of the Spa City Shootout at Hot Springs’ Summit Arena.

The 46-31 loss dropped Matt Hall’s team to the consolation bracket. They played Malvern on Saturday afternoon with the winner moving to Monday’s fifth-place game and the loser going to Monday’s seventh-place game.

New Year’s Day holiday deadlines keep this paper from updating those results.

Other first-round results from the Spa City Shootout included Clarksville over Maumelle, 61-55; Hot Springs over Little Rock Christian, 49-46; and Hot Springs Lakeside over Malvern, 53-37.

CAC, which beat Drew Central in the Arkansas Baptist Classic heading into the Christmas break, fell to 2-8. The Mustangs will open 7-4A conference play Tuesday, Jan. 7 at Nashville.