By Marlana Smith
Entering the fourth quarter of their game on Thursday, February 20, the North Shelby Lady Raiders led Northwestern by six points.
NS then took control outscoring the Lady Eagles 20-10 en route to a 70-54 victory in its final home game of the season.
North Shelby’s Ava Williams tallied a game-high of 24 points. Presley Stoneburner scored 18 including six in the fourth quarter. Lilly Cook and Ceairra Kirby each had 10 points.
“Ava did well. We knew the high post was going to be open and that’s Ava’s shot, so that’s something we kind of game planned for and wanted to get her involved. I thought all the girls at point did well,” said North Shelby head coach Landon Daniel.
Williams scored a bucket five seconds into the game. Kirby went 2-for-2 from the free throw line. NS led 4-0. Stoneburner also got in on the action scoring a basket.
NW scored as Halie Smith put in a bucket.
The Lady Eagles would come back to trail by two after Smith and Alexa McCollum fired in a 3-pointers. NW then tied the game 9-9.
NW took its first lead after Smith scored a 3-pointer. The Lady Eagles held their lead ending the first period, 16-13.
Smith hit a 3-pointer within seconds into the second quarter.
Williams scored three points inching closer to taking the lead back for NS.
Both teams battled and at halftime the game was tied 29-29.
North Shelby took a four-point lead in the third period after Williams and Stoneburner tallied buckets. With 5:16 on the board, Northwestern took a one-point advantage, 35-34.
Williams tied things up after receiving the ball on an inbound play and was good for a basket. She tallied six more points in three and a half minutes putting NS up 50-44.
Williams scored 11 of her 24 points in the third quarter.
The Lady Raiders dominated the final period. Kirby and Cook each tallied a bucket within a minute apart.
North Shelby ended the regular season with a 14-11 record.
“With Caroline (Linberger) out, it was a big deal. For the girls to score 70 points without Caroline and her 15 points a game, I am really proud of them,” said Daniel.
The Lady Raiders take on Novinger Monday, February 24 in the first round of the District Tournament at La Plata.