It wasn't easy, but Homestead stayed perfect on Wednesday.
The Class 4A No. 1 Spartans improved to 13-0 with a 59-52 victory over Snider on Wednesday in the first SAC Holiday Tournament semifinal.
Homestead led by just two with a little over three minutes left in regulation, but a Jazmyne Geist free throw followed by a steal and layup by the senior gave the Spartans a cushion.
Snider (9-3) would get to within three on a pair of free throws, but a Karissa McLaughlin three-pointer with 2:17 left stymied the rally.
McLaughlin finished with 21 points but struggled from the field at times against a tough and aggressive Snider defense. The senior shot just 5-of-16 from the field, but came up big late.
Madisen Parker hit four three-pointers on the way to 13 points while Geist added 12.
"It wasn't our best shooting day and we didn't shoot well at the line, but we found a way to survive and play again," Homestead coach Rod Parker said.
Senior Kyla Covington was a force inside for the Panthers, finishing with 22 points on 9-of-15 shooting. Homestead had trouble at times with containment of the forward.
"In all honesty, I think we did a good job getting in front of her (in passing lanes), but she got the ball she finished," Parker said. "When we play Snider again (on Jan. 13) it is going to have to be a really conscious effort to keep the ball out of her hands."
Carroll 56, Concordia Lutheran 47: The Chargers avenged a regular-season loss to the Cadets with a victory in the second semifinal on Wednesday.
Carroll (11-4) got scoring contributions from nine different players in the win as Coach Mark Redding utilized quick tempo and wholesale substitutions to keep the Cadets off balance.
Concordia beat Carroll 51-44 on Dec. 9.
"We were more aggressive with our trap and made them speed up their game," said Redding about the game plan. "The first game we played we were slowing things down and playing their game."
Concordia (12-3) trailed by just four entering the fourth quarter, but the Chargers were able to increase the lead as the Cadets battled fatigue and foul trouble.
"We have a tendency to wear people down," Redding said. "At the end we were much fresher and the rotation (of players into the game) really helped us."
Junior Kelli Damman had a game-high 19 points to lead tthe Chargers. Alyssa Kimes and Laney Steckler added seven apiece.
The Cadets were led by sophomore Carissa Garcia's 16 points and Sylare Starks' 13 points.