ADA — All things considered, Dover head coach Brad Thrash was tickled pink that his team was able to leave the 2005 Bertha Frank Teague Mid-America Classic with the third place trophy in hand.

Dover outlasted Perkins-Tryon 34-26 in Friday night’s third place contest despite the Lady Longhorn’s top two players shooting a combine 25.9 percent from the field.

Dover was also coming off a 36-point shellacking at the hands of eventual Mid-America Classic champion Mustang the night before.

“We wanted to win at least two. That was our goal when we came down here. You usually don’t win three down here,” Thrash said.

Dover, ranked No. 1 in Class B, improved to 17-1 on the year while Perkins-Tryon (No. 7 in Class 3A) fell to 7-2.

Both teams struggled mightily on the offensive end of the court throughout the nip-and-tuck affair that wasn’t decided until the final two minutes.

Perkins’ Heather Hughes scored on a layup after a steal and feed by Liberty Payne with 2:36 left which trimmed what was a seven-point Dover lead to 28-26.

But Dover hit seven free throws in the final 2:01 and the Lady Demons wouldn’t score again. The Lady Longhorns got two free throws apiece from Stacy Matthews and Jessica Swisher.

Dover stars Krista Bullis and Jody Munkres lead their team in scoring with 11 and nine points, respectively. But Bullis hit just 4-of-13 field goals and Munkres connected on a dismal 3-of-14 attempts.

“I thought we had a real good defensive tournament, but offensively we really struggled,” Thrash said. “You don’t expect both of them to miss so many shots at the same time. We just couldn’t find a way to get any buckets tonight. We sure didn’t shoot very well this week.”

But thanks to a stingy DHS defense, Perkins had an even tougher time scoring. The Lady Demons finished just 8-of-32 from the field, including a 1-for-9 showing by All-Tournament team selection Courtney Bayhylle who finished with just six points.

With the game tied at 19-19 midway through the third quarter, Dover scored seven straight points — including a 3-pointer by Katie Turner — to take a 26-19 lead into the fourth period.

But Perkins started the fourth with a 3-pointer by Laiken Lester and Bayhylle’s only field goal of the contest to quickly make it a two-point game and things would stay tight until Dover’s late free throws finally put the Lady Demons away.

“You just have to play defense every possession. Perkins always plays good defense. It was a defensive struggle,” Thrash said.

Bayhylle had a game-high seven rebounds for Perkins while Bullis and Swisher had six boards apiece to lead Dover.

Thrash said despite his team’s offensive woes, the Mid-America Classic — as usual — was a good experience for his club.

“It’s as close to a state tournament during the year as you can get. It’s a great tournament and we’re always glad to come down here. It’s an honor to be invited to it,” he said. “And if we can take back some hardware, that’s a plus.”