Yellowjackets’ runs not enough to chase down UC
Posted: Wednesday, December 21, 2011 12:03 pm
Greenfield was better than Union City for a stretch in the second half of each game Friday night.
That wasn’t long enough, however, as the Yellowjackets came up short in both.
Union City weathered scoring spurts from Greenfield to escape the ’Jackets’ gym with a 44-40 girls’ win and a 62-59 boys’ triumph.
Greenfield went on a 15-1 run in the opener to battle back from a 14-point deficit and then used a 17-2 run in the third quarter of the second game to go from four down to 11 up.
UC 44, Greenfield 40 (G)
While Greenfield fought its way back into the game, tying it at 34-all in the fourth quarter after falling behind 33-19 late in the third, Lady Yellowjacket head coach Willie Trevathan felt the game’s outcome came down to Union City’s ability to set the pace early and make plays late.
“I really thought a big part of the game was that the tempo was set early by Union City in that they wanted the loose balls a little more than we did,” Trevathan said. “I think their first eight points came on second opportunities. That sort of set the pace, and we fought from our heels because of that.
“We tied the game and had a chance to get back in it, but again they started scoring points off us not screening out on free throws and second opportunities. You can’t give up as many second chances as we did and have any kind of chance of beating anybody.”
Trailing 33-19 after UC opened the third period with a 12-3 run, Greenfield quickly got back in it, beginning with back-to-back 3-pointers from the left wing by Haley Rawls.
Held in check by UC’s defense and two early fouls that forced her to the bench for much of the first half, Rawls ignited the Lady ’Jacket run that carried over into the fourth quarter. Brittany Peoples flashed open underneath for a layup, and Shameilla McMullen followed with a stickback and two free throws to knot the game at 34 with 4:39 to play.
But UC scored 10 to Greenfield’s six the rest of the way, Greenfield’s points coming on a pair of rainbow 3-pointers by Andrea Smith.
“I didn’t tell them anything,” Trevathan said of his time-out talks with his team during the comeback. “We finally decided we were going to stop pouting and start competing. We didn’t play a bad game overall, but when you don’t start out prepared to fight and claw and you allow the game to be decided by hustle plays early, the team that makes those plays has the best chance to win.”
Union City followed Jackie Hudson in building an 11-5 lead early in the second period, but Greenfield scored seven straight for a 12-11 advantage. Allen scored from just outside the 3-point circle, and Rawls hit from just inside that mark.
UC answered with 10 straight points for a 21-12 lead with 1:34 left in the half.
UC 62, Greenfield 59 (B)
Greenfield was more aggressive through much of the third period, spotting UC the first four points of the quarter to break a 26-all tie and then attacking the Golden Tornadoes for 17 of the next 19 points.
Hunter Crouse scored four times in transition, while Heath Crouse scored inside, drove in for an up-and-under basket and went strong along the baseline for a 3-point play to run the ’Jackets out to a 43-32 lead with 2:51 to play in the third period.
But, Tre Lewis hit consecutive threes, and the Twisters rallied with the help of defensive stops and Greenfield’s misses at the free throw line.
“We got a nice lead going when they were trapping us in the backcourt and near the halfcourt,” Greenfield head man Peter Angelos said. “We were passing the ball out and attacking, and it was going great. And, then we started missing free throws. In the second half, we were 5-for-12. We missed seven of 12 free throws in a tight game. And, it seemed that whenever we needed to get a defensive stop, we didn’t get it.”
A back-breaking moment came at 5:17 of the fourth with the ’Jackets up 51-50. UC head coach Shane Sisco was called for a technical foul, but Greenfield then missed both free throws and was whistled for a five-seconds violation on the ensuing possession.
UC eventually took the lead for good on another Lewis triple and got a big blocked shot and free throw from Peyton Mosley at the end of the game.
“Hats off to Union City,” Angelos said. “They made the plays coming down the stretch. Montre Lewis made two tough step-back threes with a guy in his face, and the big guy (Mosley) finished around the basket and made his free throws.
“When you lose a close game like that against a good team, it’s pretty easy to look at 10-for-20 free throws and say that was a big part.”
Heath Crouse hit a pair of threes and Alex Roberts added another as Greenfield built a 13-8 lead in the first period. After UC reversed course to take a 24-17 lead midway through the second, the Yellowjackets responded with nine of the last 11 points of the period. Published in The WCP 12.20.11