Extra effort works well for Westview
Posted: Friday, January 6, 2012 12:00 pm
By KEVIN WEAKS
Westview won the one that mattered.
Less than a week after a last-second loss to Gibson County in the finals of the Martin Lions Club Christmas Tournament on its home floor, Westview returned the favor with an exhilarating 57-55 double-overtime win over those same Lady Pioneers on the same floor Tuesday night.
This one, however, will count in the District 13AA race.
While the Christmas tourney loss on the previous Thursday was a non-district game, the teams’ showdown five nights later counts in the league standings. Westview improves to 11-5 overall and 5-2 in the district, while GC drops to 11-5 and 3-4.
“I’d rather win tonight from a district standpoint,” Lady Charger head coach Sean Stephenson said. “I don’t ever want to lose one, but if I had to pick one that was more important, obviously playing a district game on your own floor is more important.”
Westview’s boys made it a sweep for the night, the Chargers not nearly as challenged in a 66-40 verdict.
Similar to the girls’ situation, the Westview boys were coming off a tough loss in the Lions tourney championship game, although to non-district foe Henry County. Still, head coach J.B. Suiter will take that loss last week if it brings a pair of wins this week.
“We talked about the tough Henry County loss, and we’d gladly trade that for a couple of district wins this week,” Suiter said. “We took care of one and, hopefully, we’ll go to Obion (Central) and get the other one.”
Westview’s boys are now 12-4 and 4-2.
Westview travels to Troy to play Obion County Central in a 13AA doubleheader Friday night.
Westview 57, GC 55 (G)
The two teams traded buzzer-beaters before Kaley Leyhue sealed the outcome by hitting shots with the clock not running.
Leyhue was 5-of-6 from the free throw line in the final 1:27 of the second overtime, giving the Lady Chargers just enough of a gap on the scoreboard to hold off Gibson County and finally end the six-period slugfest.
“I was glad for her,” Stephenson said. “That’s a big confidence boost for her. And, that’s what you want your point guard to do. You want her to be able to step up and have the confidence to knock those late free throws down.”
Leyhue’s success at the line went against the pattern of the previous two quarters, where misses opened the door for each team to extend the game.
The game could have ended in regulation in Gibson County’s favor, but Khadijah Alexander missed the front end of a bonus twice in the final 27 seconds.
Kaitlyn Harrelson then cashed in as her 3-pointer from the right wing hit nothing but net as time expired, the game tied at 43-all.
“They were pressing, they trapped, so we hit the open player, and (Harrelson) just let it fly,” Stephenson said of the shot at the end of regulation. “I asked her if she thought it was going in when she shot it, and she said she had no idea. I told her it looked pretty good when it left her hand. She came off the bench and played well.”
The Lady Chargers then missed three times in four chances in the final 1:03 of the first overtime, the uneasy 48-45 lead erased by Jasmine Whittemore’s triple from the left wing with four seconds to play.
Gibson County opened the second OT with a trey from Alexander for a 51-48 lead, but the Lady Pioneers then saw point guard Courtney Haynes and Whittemore foul out while Westview scored its final eight points at the line to seal the win.
“I was proud of them for figuring out a way to compete,” Stephenson said of his squad. “Forgetting whatever bad happened and just playing in the moment. I thought we took better care of the ball in the overtime. Even if we didn’t make shot, at least we got shots. I was glad that we were able to play through some adversity and find a way to win.”
For middle quarters and part of the fourth, Gibson County’s one-point advantage from the first period was all that stood between the two teams.
GC overcame an early deficit for an 11-10 lead at the end of the first quarter, and the teams then played on even terms over the next two frames as the Lady Pioneers led 23-22 at the half and 35-34 after three.
Gibson County built a 43-36 lead midway through the fourth frame but then could not run out the clock before Westview rallied to force the first extra period.
Teddy Vincent, who made several sweet spin moves and drives into the lane, led Westview with 18 points, while Kaley Leyhue had 12 and Kendall Leyhue added 11.
Alexander scored 19 and Haynes added 14 for Gibson County.
Westview 66, GC 40 (B)
So opposite from the opener was this one that the two teams went to the ends of their respective benches early in the fourth quarter while the final 3:51 of the game was played with a running clock.
The Chargers’ lopsided win came after a nearly-even first quarter, where Westview led just 19-18 at the break behind eight points from Antonio Hogard.
But, Westview then outscored GC 13-4 in the second period and got 10 points from Chris Evans in the third to open a 51-32 gap.
Hogard led the Chargers with 16 points, and both Jazell Baker and Tyquis Johnson added 11 for Westview.
Jercolby Milan had 11 points for the Pioneers. Published in The WCP 1.5.12