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Junior Avery Arnold, right, shoulder bumps sophomore Samantha George as she is announced in Blue Eye’s starting lineup.

The Blue Eye Lady Bulldogs will return to JQH Arena for the Class 2 state tournament for the second year in a row.

The Lady Bulldogs defeated Richland 71-55 on Saturday to advance to the semifinal round.

Four Lady Bulldogs were in double-digits in the quarterfinal match. Riley Arnold scored 19, Avery Arnold had 17, and Gracyn Fairchild and Kyla Warren put up 15 points apiece.

Last year, the Lady Bulldogs lost in the semifinal round to Tipton on March 13. It was their first loss since Jan. 7.

This year’s record, compared to last year’s 27-5 record, has fewer wins and more recent losses, but the Lady Bulldogs are still entering the matchup against Ellington (21-5) on a nine-game winning streak. Ellington is also on a nine-game winning streak.

Blue Eye and Ellington will face off at 5 p.m. on Thursday, March 11, at JQH Arena in Springfield, Missouri.

The winner will take on the winner of the Scotland County (22-5) and Wellington-Napoleon (23-2) semifinal.

JQH Arena, 685 S. John Q Hammons Parkway, will host the championship at 4 p.m. the following day. The third-place game will be held at 10 a.m., March 12, at Hammons Student Center, right next door to JQH.

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