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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Lady Bears edged by Liberty

Thursday, January 24, 2008

To say that the Mountain View/Birch Tree Liberty Lady Eagles didn't exactly set the world on fire with their shooting prowess in the consolation round of the 34th annual Thayer Lady Bobcat Winter Classic would be a major understatement.

Liberty made just nine field goals for the game, while shooting 24-for-38 from the charity stripe.

But when the situation demanded it, the Lady Eagles managed to scrape together a couple of big buckets to knock off Mammoth Spring 46-42 in overtime Jan. 17 at Thayer.

Midway into the fourth period, it looked like the sixth-seeded Lady Bears would emerge with a victory, as a jumper from Stevi Smith (three points) gave Mammoth Spring a 31-24 lead with 4:52 left to play.

But then Liberty, the number seven seed, stitched together seven straight points, including its first back-to-back hoops of the night, to move in front 33-32.

Mammoth Spring climbed back in the driver's seat with four consecutive charity tosses from Sierra Smoot (seven points) and Bianca Paige (four points).

With a chance to add to this 36-33 lead, the Lady Bears next two trips to the free throw line came up empty, with Mammoth Spring missing three straight to leave Liberty with some faint hope. The Lady Bears were 14-for-22 from the free throw line against Liberty.

Although they had struggled mightily at shooting the ball, the Lady Eagles got a big-time shot from Kala Spencer, who flung a line-drive trey into the hoop under pressure, knotting the contest at 36-all with 15 ticks left on the clock.

Mammoth Spring gave up a chance to score the last bucket of regulation when the Lady Bears were whistled for a five-second call as they attempted to inbound the ball following Spencer's game-tying 3-pointer.

The Lady Eagles moved in front 39-36 in overtime thanks to three free throws, but a clutch jumper from Shelby Frey (four points) pulled Mammoth Spring within one, 39-38, with 1:58 left.

Turns out that was as close as Mammoth Spring could get in the extra period.

Smoot hit a triple with 29 ticks left on the clock, but the Lady Eagles managed to hold on for a 46-42 overtime victory.

Amy Young had a big night for the Lady Bears, as she poured in 10 of her team-high 16 points in the first half for Mammoth Spring.

She scored her team's first five points of the game, while Kayly Vest (seven points) chipped in with a putback that gave Mammoth Spring a 7-6 lead in the first.

An inside hoop from Young near the end of the frame staked Mammoth Spring to a 9-7 advantage after one.

Liberty had trouble generating much of an offensive threat in the first half, but thanks to a near-constant parade to the charity stripe, Liberty managed to score enough points to hang around.

The Lady Bears were on top 14-8 when Liberty closed the half on an 8-2 run to lock matters at 16-all at intermission.

The Lady Bears came out strong in the second half, breaking free for a 9-2 run that saw Mammoth Spring in charge with a 25-18 lead. Young tossed in the first four points of this burst, followed by a trey from Vest and baseline jumper by Smoot.

Mammoth Spring limited Liberty to just one field goal in the third, and the Lady Bears took a 29-23 lead into the final frame.

The Lady Eagles managed to outscore Mammoth Spring 13-7 in the fourth, and with Spencer's big trey, extended the action long enough to slide by the Lady Bears by four points in OT.

Leigha Presley finished the game with one point for Mammoth Spring.



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