(Recap Courtesy KyForward.com)
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Bowling Green got a 15-point, 19-rebound performance from Lynkaylah James as the Purples defeated Bishop Brossart 50-48 in double overtime in the 2021 Mingua Beef Jerky Girls Sweet Sixteen® Basketball Tournament at Rupp Arena.
Neither team played particularly well and combined for 42 turnovers and a 32.9 percent shooting performance, but it was the Purples that made the biggest plays late in the game.
Bishop Brossart (21-6) led for the majority of the fourth quarter, but Jordan Rowe’s made free throw put her team up 37-34 and would be the final points the Lady Stangs would score in the final 2:33 in regulation.
Bowling Green (19-10) got a free throw from James just seconds later and would tie it on Tanaya Bailey’s layup with 1:09 to go in the fourth and send the contest to overtime tied at 37-37.
The biggest play of the fourth quarter, however, could easily be considered when Brossart’s Marie Kiefer picked up her fifth foul with her team leading 35-30 with 5:33 left in the quarter.
Kiefer led the Lady Stangs in scoring heading into the contest with 19.6 points per contest but finished the game with just seven points on 3-for-13 shooting.
“We know how to win games and what we have to do to win games,” said Brossart head coach Kevin Bundy. “We play hard in practice every day so that we don’t look for any crutches if something doesn’t go our way. Nobody in the state wants to play without a player like Marie and we sure didn’t want to play without her, but that is the hand that we were dealt. Offensively, it affected us an awful lot because when you have a player of Marie’s caliber, you want to do your best to make sure you are running your offense through her. It is hard to duplicate some of the things Marie can do.”
Bowling Green won the battle of the boards by a 42-34 thanks in large part to James’ 19 rebounds.
“We have worked on that for quite some time,” Bowling Green head coach Calvin Head added about his team’s rebounding performance. “That was a point of interest on our scouting report and today, rebounding was a factor. (James and Meadow Tisdale) did a great job of keeping Keifer off the boards using their strength and athleticism. They went up and grabbed the ball with two hands like they’ve been taught, and they were very competitive on the boards. Lauren Macht and Kiefer did a good job of getting rebounds, but I thought (James and Tisdale) did a good job of neutralizing that.”
No rebound, however, was bigger than Jasiyah Franklin’s rebound off a missed 3-pointer with just four seconds left in the game.
“That is why we called the other timeout when we saw their setup,” Head added. “We talked in both of those timeouts ‘don’t let them get a three off and if they do it’s got to be highly contested’ and we did a good job. The rebound was probably more important putting a freshman in that situation when she hadn’t played all game, she came up with the biggest rebound of the game in my opinion.”
Tisdale added 14 points and four blocks for the Purples.
Macht led all scorers with 16 points for Brossart and was aided by Rosie Jump’s 15 points.
Kiefer narrowly missed a triple double as she collected 10 rebounds and nine blocks to go along with her seven points.
“Coach just got done saying in the locker room that it is going to sting a little bit,” stated Rowe of the loss and the experience of playing at Rupp Arena. “But I think that once that goes away, this will be a day that I will always remember playing here with my best friends. Win or lose, we got to step on that floor and that has been a dream of ours for so long and I am really proud of this team.”
Bowling Green advances on to a quarterfinal matchup with Sacred Heart at 11 a.m. on Thursday morning.
Valkyries Double-Up Lady Patriots
Sacred Heart (22-7) had little issue with handing Knott County Central in the first game of the tournament.
SHA briefly trailed 8-6 when Kelsey Noble drained a 3-pointer for the Lady Patriots, but Triniti Ralston answered just 21 seconds later with a three of her own for a lead the Valkyries would not relinquish the rest of the way en route to a 64-32 win.
Knott County Central (20-8) committed 26 turnovers that led to 30 Sacred Heart points.
Both teams combined for 42 turnovers as the nerves and jitters of playing on the Rupp Arena floor set in early.
Reagan Bender led all scorers with 21 points, but it was Josie Gilvin’s triple-double performance that showed just how dominant the Sacred Heart pressure defense was for the Lady Patriots to overcome.
Gilvin scored 13 points and had game-highs in rebounds (10) and steals (10).
Flyers Soar Past Cardinals in Overtime
Franklin County used 17 points, five assists, eight steals and two rebounds from Brooklynn Miles to overcome a terrible free throw shooting performance to advance past South Laurel 55-50.
Franklin County (17-5) trailed 50-45 with 59 seconds to go in regulation, but Miles scored the final five points of regulation to send it to overtime and then tallied three of the Lady Flyers’ five points in overtime for the win.
Miles, who is a Miss Basketball candidate and University of Tennessee signee, wasn’t the only Franklin County player with a huge performance as Patience Laster notched a 14-point, 14-rebound double-double performance.
South Laurel (21-10) saw Regan Jones collect a double-double of her own with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
South Laurel won the rebounding battle by a 40-34 count, but the Lady Cardinals committed an uncharacteristic 28 turnovers that were just too much to overcome.
Franklin County won despite shooting 17-for-35 from the charity stripe.
Bearcats Too Much for Warriors to Handle
Anderson County led for over 22 minutes of action as the Lady Bearcats lived up to the billing of one of the state’s best teams by defeating Southwestern 78-67.
Amiya Jenkins led the way for Anderson County with 24 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and three steals.
Anderson County (27-2) would have three other scorers with a high point total than Southwestern’s top performer.
Tiffani Riley scored 16 points and collected seven rebounds while Sophie Smith added 15 points along with Rachel Satterly’s 14 points.
Southwestern was led by the Smiddy sisters with 12 each.
Ayden Smiddy, Southwestern’s lone senior, scored all her points from long range while Alexa Smiddy notched a double-double performance with 10 rebounds to go along with her 12 points.
Anderson County will now meet up with Franklin County at 2 p.m. in the quarterfinals on Thursday.