Both White Hall and Watson Chapel made plenty of mistakes in the fourth quarter of Friday's game at White Hall.
Both White Hall and Watson Chapel made plenty of mistakes in the fourth quarter of Friday’s game at White Hall.
Both teams still had a shot in the closing seconds of the game to win, though. It was Watson Chapel that made a few more clutch plays down the stretch to hand White Hall its first 5A-Southeast Conference loss of the year, 37-35.
The Lady Bulldogs had a chance to tie the game at the buzzer, but Lindsey Williams’ shot from the left corner on the three-point line fell short.
The win gives Watson Chapel a 4-1 conference record and 10-8 overall record. That ties the Lady Wildcats for second place with White Hall, which fell to 4-1 in the conference and 9-4 overall.
“We knew if we could come in here and steal a win on one of the top teams at their place knowing we have them at home second round, we knew that would be a big step for us,” Watson Chapel coach Leslie Henderson said.
With 7 seconds left, Williams missed two free throws that would have tied the game, but Kamera Bozeman missed two free throws for Watson Chapel with 4.7 seconds remaining to set up Williams’ last shot.
For White Hall coach Mike Upshaw, it did not matter that the loss was at home or on the road.
“Any conference loss is a tough loss,” he said. “This isn’t the end of the world. We have nine games left to play and we are 4-1.”
The fourth quarter was not exactly kind to either team.
Watson Chapel finished the game by making only 10 of 30 free throws and the Lady Wildcats were 4 of 14 in the fourth quarter. Despite missing so many free throws, Henderson said they made just enough to come away with the win.
“That’s the way you have to think about it, that we shot 10 out of 30 to escape with a win,” she said. “But we have been that way all year. Not like I am saying it’s a bad free-throw shooting night. We have struggled at the line.”
The Lady Wildcats also had six turnovers in the final quarter, but forced six turnovers as well, including two in the final minute of play. Henderson said the plan was to apply constant defensive pressure all game.
“That’s what we wanted to do, and it seemed like they would make a good pass,” she said. “They did a great job and it could have been anyone’s game. They put pressure on us and did a good job of that, too.”
Besides the turnovers, White Hall hit just one free throw out of six attempts in the fourth quarter and started the final period shooting 1 of 7 from the field.
The Lady Bulldogs also allowed Watson Chapel to grab seven offensive rebounds in the final quarter.
“What more can you say?” Upshaw said. “When the games on the line, gotta be able to make plays.
“We have done that and we were close (Friday). Maybe they were trying too hard, but I will take this effort every night.”
Bozeman led Watson Chapel with 15 points and Jasmine Bell had eight points.
Henderson said her two forwards, Bozeman and Bell, both played very well.
“I thought our big girls did a good job,” she said. They were in a bit of foul trouble, and they did a good job of coming in and out for each other. Kamera earned her points and was huge for us.”
Haley Baugh led White Hall with 16 points and Patience Walker had six points.
Upshaw said even though it was a loss, he was proud of how his team played.
“Our kids played hard, dived on the floor for the ball, were fighting and scratching,” he said. “I am disappointed that we got beat but I am not disappointed with the kids because they played hard.”