The Lady Hounds were right in Tuesday night's MEC game with Lafayette at halftime, trailing by just four points.
In the second half, Lafayette shot them right out of it.
After an ice cold first half from the perimeter, Lafayette's sister tandem of Shay and Brooke Ward made seven second half three's, allowing the Irish to break away from Maryville for a 58-36 win at MHS Gymnasium.
Shay Ward knocked down four third quarter treys and added another at the start of the fourth to finish with a game-high 19 points. Brooke Ward connected on the other two for her only six points.
The Irish (12-3, 1-0) made 12-17 shots in the second half and scored 34 of their 58 points.
In the first half, they were just 10-28 with no three-point makes and very few outside the paint.
"We got some good shooters," said Lafayette head coach Ryan Madison. "We talked at halftime that the only thing we made were layups. We really hadn't hit a lot of perimeter shots. We're a lot better shooting team than we've been in the past. We felt maybe if we could get a few looks, we'll knock a couple down. We just kept at it. We didn't get down. We have kids that don't have that much of a conscious."
Lafayette went from chilly to scolding hot in the third quarter, hitting 8-9 shots and all five three-point attempts.
The first two by Shay Ward extended a three-point lead to 31-23 with 5:00 left. Her last two of the quarter made it 40-27. Oceonna Weston scored and assisted on Lafayette's final two third quarter baskets, putting the Irish in front 44-30.
The Irish scored the opening six points of the fourth quarter and 14 of the first 16 to build as much as a 26-point lead with 2:04 left.
Shay Ward started it off with a three and Brooke added another.
Maryville's only basket during that stretch was a layup by Mollie Holtman.
"Tonight, I think things got a little tough for us and we started to lick our wounds," said Maryville head girls basketball coach Grant Hageman. "You just can't do that against a team like Lafayette. We've got to show more guts at times."
Playing its fourth games in six days, Maryville dropped to 5-12 overall, 0-3 in the MEC and 0-7 against MEC competition.
This was the Hounds' third loss to Lafayette this year and fifth straight overall.
In each of the last two, the Hounds have given up a combined 18 three-pointers.
Notre Dame de Sion hit 11 the night before in a 70-46 win over the Lady Hounds.
"Lafayette shot the ball extremely well, but we weren't getting out to the shooters," said Hageman. "We got to recognize if there's a girl having a night like that, you got to get in her hip pocket and just stay with her."
Maryville was slowed a bit offensively in the second half and finished with under 40 points for the first time in three games.
The Lady Hounds were led in scoring by junior Chelsea Byland with 14 points. Senior Chelsea McMichael had six.
Senior guard Blair Twaddle was held to five points, snapping a streak of four consecutive double-figure games.
She was locked down most of the night by Lafayette's Ashley Hinkle who forced several turnovers and gave Twaddle precious little space to get off shots.
"Ashley is a great defender," said Madison. "In my opinion, she's one of the better defenders in the conference. I know there's a lot of good one's. It's something she does a lot. She's really athletic and she loves to guard. Not every kid has that. Blair is a really good offensive player and every time we play them, she's killed us. We switched it up. We usually have Oceonna (Weston) guard her. Tonight, we had Ashley and she did a really good job."
Hinkle finished with 12 points in the game, scoring most of that on self-created break-away opportunities. Weston had 13 points and was Lafayette's leading rebounder.
The Irish held as much as a seven-point lead in the first half that was reduced to four by halftime.
Maryville scored the opening basket of the game on a back-pick layup by Ann Coleman, but never led again after it was 2-1.
A steal and layup by Hinkle with 3:03 left in the first quarter put Lafayette in front to stay.
The Irish scored the final six points of the quarter to lead 11-5.
Maryville turned it over nine times in the opening quarter, exceeding its seven shot attempts.
Two Irish turnovers to begin the second quarter led to easy Maryville baskets that trimmed the deficit to 11-9.
Lafayette spread it back to seven on a follow by Weston.
The Hounds got a three-point play from Baylee Scarbrough and a left-handed running back shot from Byland to make it 17-15.
Maryville got within two twice more in the quarter on another lefty runner from Byland and a press-breaking layup by McMichael.
A four-point swing occurred at the end of the quarter when Byland couldn't finish a transition layup opportunity that would've tied the game at 21. It led to a fast break opportunity for Lafayette that was converted by Kayla Wagenka with seven seconds left that made it 23-19 at the half.
Byland scored Maryville's first three third quarter baskets, beginning with a three that cut Lafayette's lead down to six.
Shay Ward answered with a three, setting off an avalanche of them in the second half.
"I didn't think we really fought back when they started to get going on offense," said Hageman. "We had some people kind of shut it down. These girls are a great team and they haven't done that up to this point. That's what I'm disappointed in."
Maryville's next game is Friday at home against East Buchanan.