South Pointe outscored the Rock Hill Lady Bearcats 7-2 in the overtime period and stretched their region 4-AAAA record to 4-1, but the 48-43 win did not come easy.
South Pointe handled Rock Hill's full-court press without much trouble, and took a 10-point lead into the fourth period, but Rock Hill rallied behind a big quarter from Maggie Rogers and guard LaQuesha Crockett.
Rock Hill tied the game at 41 with 27 seconds remaining on a bucket by Paulette Rivers, and had an opportunity to win the game in regulation when Crockett came up with a steal on the Lady Stallions' ensuing possession.
Crockett took the ball and tried a deep 3-pointer as time expired, but the shot was long and the fans were treated to free basketball.
The overtime belonged to South Pointe and its pressuring defense. The Lady Stallions had 20 steals throughout the game, but it was the four turnovers in the final four minutes that made the difference.
South Pointe opened the extra session with a free throw from Alicia Hope and a basket from Talicia Crockett in the first 30 seconds of overtime.
Crockett was fouled on her basket. Even though she missed the shot, South Pointe wrestled away the offensive rebound and controlled both the clock and the score from that point forward.
Hope paced the Lady Stallions with 14 points in the contest, while Rock Hill was led by Alicia Bragg's 12 points. Maggie Rogers finished with 11, eight in the fourth quarter and overtime.
"We have seen the full-court press from most of our recent oppontents," South Pointe coach Brett Childers said after the win. "We slumped a little during the fourth quarter, but I was pleased at how we responded to the challenge by striking first in overtime."• GAFFNEY 50, CLOVER 36 -- In Clover, Kiesha Leach scored 18 points to lead Gaffney to a 50-36 win over the Blue Eagles.
Leach broke open a tight game as she exploded for 12 points in the third quarter. Gaffney (12-4, 5-0 Region 4-AAAA) outscored Clover 21-9 in the third.
Clover's Logan Ballard tied the game at 21 with 5:28 left in the third. Gaffney then outscored the Blue Eagles 18-5 the rest of the quarter.
The Indians led by as many as 16 in the fourth. Ballard finished with 8 points to lead the Blue Eagles, who fall to 6-11 overall.
Clover wore pink headbands in honor of Kay Yow, the late N.C. State women's basketball coach who recently lost her 20-plus year battle with breast cancer.• NORTHWESTERN 63, FORT MILL 38 -- This time, the Lady Trojans made certain not to experience a fourth-quarter collapse, as they had losing five of their past six games.
Northwestern built a big enough cushion and maintained complete control down the stretch for the 63-38 home victory over Fort Mill on Tuesday.
Led by junior guard Kelia Shelton, Northwestern carried a 48-25 lead in the fourth quarter. Lady Trojans coach John Bramlett said his team was conscious to play better down the stretch.
"We lost five of our last six games, and during each one of our losses, we led in the fourth quarter," Bramlett said. "We have been playing good enough defense to win, but just needed to find a way to generate easy baskets."
Bramlett said that the strategy was to speed up the tempo on both ends of the floor.
"Playing the fullcourt man-to-man seems to work; that led to us getting more easy shots, which is what we wanted to do."
Leading only 15-11 after one quarter, the Lady Trojans defense created several Fort Mill turnovers, leading to the 31-19 halftime lead.
Shelton, who led all scorers with 28 points, took command with eight in the third. That was more than enough to spark a 17-6 Lady Trojans run for the comfortable 48-25 advantage after three quarters.• NATION FORD 58, YORK 40 -- Nation Ford's 3-point shooting was key down the stretch in their 58-40 win over the York Lady Cougars Tuesday night. Nation Ford made five three pointers in the fourth quarter, three by Kaitlyn Smith.
"Nation Ford is a good shooting team," York coach Paula Blackwell said. "We didn't want to get into a shooting contest with them."
Katie Kozlowski came out hot for the Falcons, scoring ten points in the first. Nation Ford led 15-6 after one. Gina Patton had four in the first for York.
The Falcons defense did not allow York to find any open shots in the second quarter either, as they increased their lead to 28-17 athe half. Kozlowski 17 of her game high 24 in the first half. Tikierra Anderson led York with 8.
Nation Ford led by as much as 13, but then the Cougars press started to cause the Falcons problems. York cut the lead to 36-34, but could get no closer. The Flacons closed on a 22-6, thanks to their three pointing shooting.
Nation Ford coach Brian Turner said "I was proud of our defense, especially in the first half. Our defense led to some easier shots for us, and Katie Kozlowski benefitted from that."