A cold shooting night doomed the Lady Bears to a defeat against top seed Bishop McGuinness on Senior Night.
Mount Airy’s five seniors stayed with the Lady Villains for about six minutes before Bishop steadily built a big lead in a 57-37 win to stay atop the Northwest Conference standings.
Mount Airy started the season 14-0, but has gone 4-4 in the past eight games in a highly competitive league.
The Bears are 8-4 in the Northwest, a game ahead of Atkins at 7-5. Similar to Mount Airy, the Lady Camels went 9-1 in nonconference play, but have found the going tough in the conference.
Mount Airy split with Atkins and Winston-Salem Prep (9-2), but lost both games to Bishop (10-1), the defending 1A state champion.
As for Tuesday’s game, Mount Airy started the evening by honoring its senior class of Alex Atkins, Davi Barbour, Kathryn Beasley, Mikayla Seivers and Jasmine Varney.
Bishop scored the first eight points of the game as the emotional seniors struggled with their shots.
After sophomore Ayano Shelton took the lid off the basket with a score, the Bears responded with five more points for an 11-7 margin. However, Varney’s made 3-pointer would be a rare sight Tuesday.
The Bears are the best outside shooters in the area, but made just two more attempts the rest of the way as Bishop closed out hard on all shooters.
The Villains finished the first quarter on an 8-1 spurt to go up 19-8.
The run would reach 16-3 over the first three minutes of the second quarter for a 27-10 lead.
The Bears edged closer, but were down 31-18 at the half.
Bishop struggled coming out in the third period, but the Bears were only able to put up two points themselves in the first three minutes.
Then the Villains got going and built a 13-2 run to double up the Bears 44-22 with less than a minute in the quarter.
Three minutes into the fourth quarter, the Villains were up 51-25 before coasting to a 20-point win.
Mount Airy is second in the conference in scoring, but managed just 37 against a stifling Bishop defense.
Varney led the team with eight points, while Shelton scored seven off the bench.
Atkins scored five, Barbour, Beasley and Skyler Flippen had four each. Seivers scored three and Carley VanHoy two.
Tia Cappuccio led Bishop with 12 points, while Julia Brown and Danielle Nieters had 10 each. Alex Putman and Tessa Johnston scored nine each, and Cameron Nieters had six.