December 4, 2003

Season Opener Slips Away From Lady Tigers In Final 90 Seconds

In a 32-minute varsity basketball game, 90 seconds doesnt seem like much time. But it proved to be the difference in the season opener for the Scotland County Lady Tigers as Green City came from behind in the final minute and a half of the November 24 game to defeat SCR-I 44-41.

The two teams demonstrated the normal first game jitters early on as turnovers and nervous play kept the score in single digits in the opening quarter with Green City leading 6-5 after eight minutes of play.

Ali Fromm started the game with a steal and lay-up but the Tigers went cold on offense. Brandi Mallett made one free throw during the drought before scoring on an offensive rebound at the buzzer to end the first quarter.

Sophomore Angie Bulen came off the bench to give the Lady Tigers a spark in the second period. She scored on back-to-back possessions working the offensive glass for five straight points for Scotland County, who still trailed 14-11 midway through the quarter.

Jessie Cotton made a steal and went coast to coast for the score. She then found Jamie Fuller with a nice pass underneath for an easy bucket to give Scotland County its first lead since the opening basket.

Brittney Courtright knocked down a short jumper in the paint before Fromm hit a pair of free throws to boost the advantage to five points. But the Gophers answered with a shot at the buzzer to cut the deficit to three points at the break.

The Lady Tigers opened the second half with three straight turnovers that allowed Green City to regain the lead.

The two teams traded buckets and the lead as Cotton, Fromm and Courtright hit baskets for SCR-I, which went ahead 25-24 heading into the final eight minutes.

The Lady Tigers appeared poised to blow the game open early in the final period. After a bucket by Courtright, Rebecca Consbrock drove the lane for a score. Fromm blocked a shot on the other end and Cotton took it the distance for the fast break bucket to put SCR-I on top 32-24 and force a Green City timeout with 5:36 left to play.

The stoppage paid immediate dividends as the Gophers battled back to within three points.

Courtright stalled the rally with a three-point play but a couple of turnovers by the Lady Tigers let Green City tie the game at 35-35.

SCR-I fell behind by two before Fuller scored on a drive to once again tie the score.

A free throw by Courtright gave Scotland County the lead back with 90 seconds to play.

But Green City converted on the other end and the Lady Tigers were unable to take advantage of two scoring opportunities down the stretch and were forced to foul the Gophers.

Jessica Ayers nailed five of six free throws for the home team down the stretch to seal the win. Cotton hit a three pointer at the buzzer to make the final score 44-41.

Cotton led SCR-I with 11 points. Courtright added nine points and Fromm finished with eight. Ayers finished with 22 points to lead all scorers.

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