With four minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, Rock Hill coach Eric Rollings reminded his team during a timeout to remain patient down the stretch.
The Lady Bearcats did just that and erased a five-point deficit and ridded themselves of the sour taste of Monday night's blowout loss at Lancaster. Rock Hill outscored Clover 8-2 over the final 3:11 to earn the 43-40 win Friday night.
"The biggest difference between (Friday) and the other night is that we finally executed some things," Rollings said. "Everything we ran, the kids executed very well, and that was big down the stretch when we were down five."
Paulette Rivers scored a jumper with 2:18 left to put Clover up five, 40-35. Following the bucket, Shandrice Erby took the inbounds pass, moved the ball up the court and was elbowed in the mouth and was forced to leave the game with a bloody lip.
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Erby was on the bench for 55 seconds and Rollings called a timeout after Rivers' basket drew the Bearcats to within three. Rivers picked off a pass and quickly pushed the ball upcourt to Erby, who missed a layup, but grabbed the rebound and dished to Brooke Lucas in the corner. Lucas drilled the 3-pointer to knot the score at 40-40 with 42 seconds left.
Lucas and Laquasha Crockett, who led Rock Hill with 12 points, converted free throws in the final seconds to secure the win.
• SOUTH POINTE 44, NATION FORD 36 -- Despite missing its first five shots from the field and falling behind 9-8, South Pointe held off a late Nation Ford rally to keep its undefeated region streak alive as it picked up its sixth consecutive win.
The Lady Stallions improved to 18-1 overall and 8-0 in region play under first-year coach Brett Childers. South Pointe leads Region 3-AAAA, and is ranked third in the state, but got all they could handle from the Lady Falcons.
Earlier in the season, Nation Ford lost to the same Lady Stallion squad by 31, managing only 16 points on offense in the December region opener.
Friday night's game was a complete turnaround, as the Lady Falcons rallied from 14 down at the half to cut the lead to six with under four minutes remaining in the game.
• YORK 46, FORT MILL 28 -- In Fort Mill, York shot past the host Lady Yellow Jackets and headed into a week long anticipated -- revenge week.
"We're ready now," guard Nardia Robbins said after the Lady Cougars squashed Fort Mill for the second time this year. "We've got some big games coming up."
York (13-4, 6-2 Region 3-AAAA) plays Lancaster, which beat the Lady Cougars in the first matchup this year, and then South Pointe next week. The Lady Stallions, cruising along with a perfect region record, can pad their chances for the league championship with another win over York.
Keeping that in mind, coach Paula Blackwell said her team wasn't looking past Lancaster, but South Pointe's definitely on the horizon.
"I'm not letting them look ahead," Blackwell declared. "But we have to take it just one game at a time."
Robbins took control early and finished with 11 points, seven rebounds, five assists and five steals. Gina Patton chipped in two 3-pointers among her 10 points and the Cougars held off the resilient Jackets (3-13, 0-7).
• CHESTER 57, DREHER 41 -- In Chester, Lady Cyclone senior guard Angel Wilks could not have picked a better time to snap out of a personally described slump.
Wilks provided a much-needed spark down the stretch, scoring 13 points as Chester survived a second-half Dreher comeback for the home victory in Region 3-AAA action.
Held scoreless for three quarters, Wilks scored all of her points in the final eight minutes, including seven straight during one stretch. Chester led by 14, 30-16, early in the third, but Dreher turned up the defensive pressure, forcing several turnovers. That sparked a 13-5 Lady Devil run, which cut the deficit to six, 35-29, after three quarters.
That is when Wilks re-entered the contest and decided to take charge and regain the swagger she said had been missing in recent weeks.
"I have been having it rough the last two games, and also, I knew that we needed someone to step it up," Wilks said. "We were making too many turnovers, and that was the time that we needed good senior leadership."