LEXINGTON -- The Lady Pirates are the defending 11th Region All "A" Classic champions.
The line-up they put on the floor on Tuesday night, however, was much different than the one that led the school to that title last season.
"It's not the same team," Berea Community coach Dammian Stepp said.
"We really came back with just one returning starter. It's a new experience for these girls -- and it showed early."
The Lady Pirates (8-8) battled through some early nerves to pick up a hard-fought win that brought them one step closer to another championship.
Madison Howell had 10 points and eight rebounds as Berea topped Sayre, 37-32.
The Lady Pirates had 22 turnovers and shot just 36.8 percent, but still found a way to move on to the semifinals of the 11th Region All "A" Classic.
Berea will face Frankfort at 6:15 p.m. Thursday at Lexington Christian Academy.
In Tuesday's other quarterfinal, Model Laboratory (12-3) let a 17-point second-half lead slip away and was handed a 52-48 loss by LCA.
Frankfort Christian and Lexington Christian will meet on Thursday in the semifinals.
The championship game is set for 2 p.m. Saturday.
The Lady Pirates came into the tournament short-handed.
Sophomore Mati Stepp suffered a season-ending knee injury this summer, sophomore forward Alexis Newman was out with an ankle problem and Chesney Lovins played against Sayre despite missing Saturday's game with an injury.
Natalea Clark and Emily Maynard were also sidelined on Tuesday because of illness.
"It's kind of been the theme of our season," Stepp said of injuries and illness. "We just have to have people keep stepping up."
The Lady Pirates battled through the adversity and held off a late charge by the Lady Spartans (8-5).
Berea had a 16-12 lead at halftime and pushed out to as much as a 14-point advantage (34-20).
Sayre closed the game on a 12-3 to get back with five points.
A big-layup by Lovins and a free throw late by Isis Rogers sealed the win.
Lovins had seven points and six rebounds. Rogers had six points and seven rebounds.
Berea out-rebounded Sayre, 38-16, including an 18-5 advantage on the offensive glass.
"We did a great job rebounding," Stepp said. "We dominated the boards."
Maddy King had six points off the bench. Mackenzie Howell had four points and six rebounds. Sophie Brewer had two points and three rebounds, while Abigail Beard by two points, three rebounds and two assists.
Sayre shot 33 percent from the field, but got 23 points off turnovers.
Lady Patriots fall
Model Laboratory had its nine-game winning streak snapped on Tuesday in the quarterfinals of the 11th Region All "A" Classic in Lexington.
LCA (2-11) out-scored the Lady Patriots (12-3) 22-8 in the fourth quarter to claim a 52-48 win.
Model led by as much as 16 points (33-17) in the second half.
Taylor LeCompte had 17 points and 17 rebounds for the Lady Patriots, while Keaton Hall added 12 points.
Model had a 48-45 lead with 58.7 left after Hall came up with a steal and a lay-up.
The Lady Patriots didn't score again and LCA hit 7-of-8 free throws in the final minute to seal the win.
Model had 23 turnovers and shot just 36.8 percent from the field, including 3-of-13 from three-point range.
The Lady Patriots were 3-of-10 at the free throw line, while LCA was 17-of-24.
McKenna Tuttle had seven points and six assists. Summer Ray had seven points and four assists. Kenzie Ferguson had five points and three rebounds.
Model is set to return to action on Jan. 21 at home against Danville Christian.