Lady Rebels hold off determined Ravenwood 40-36
By Doug Dyer, for the Herald
Ravenwood just wouldn’t go away Monday night, so Franklin girls’ coach Kari Goodwin decided to shorten the game.
“My girls felt most comfortable protecting the ball,” she said. “So I knew once we were up, we just needed to milk the clock.”
The strategy worked, as the Lady Rebels (17-10) turned away a late Raptor rally and earned a 40-36 victory in the District 11-AAA girls consolation final.
Trailing by one at 37-36, Ravenwood (9-17) had the ball and a shot at the win with :13 left, but District MVP Anna Patton stepped in front of an entry pass to help preserve a Franklin win.
“They hung in there with us, so they’ve improved a lot,” Patton said. “I think their defense was better than in the past.”
Patton finished with eight points for the Lady Rebels, who were led by 13 from Rachel Hawn, and Angela McPeek also added eight. Bailey Swayze led Ravenwood with 13 points, while Megan Hawken finished with seven.
The Lady Rebels advance as the No. 3 seed to the Region 6-AAA tournament and will face, the runner-up from District 12. Ravenwood will face off against the 12-AAA winner.
“Our girls have bounced back every time after a loss,” Ravenwood coach Matt Robinson said. “I anticipate they’ll do the same thing here.”
The Lady Raptors were able to stick with Franklin thanks to their work on the defensive glass, Robinson said, not allowing the Rebels any second chance points in the second half.
“When they did shoot it, we got the rebounds,” he said. “A lot of teams when they hold the ball like that, they’ll end up making a mistake.”
Franklin fell behind early but rallied to take a three-point lead at halftime thanks to clutch shots from Meredith Ovies and McPeek late in the second quarter.
The Lady Rebels, who trailed 16-11 midway through the second, were able to force Ravenwood turnovers and convert at the other end. Franklin went on an 11-3 run to close out the half, with Ovies’ 3-pointer from the wing giving the Lady Rebels the lead at the 3:40 mark.
“I told my girls that the only options we wanted were something guaranteed, whether it’s a layup or a wide open look,” Goodwin said.
Momentum stayed with the Lady Rebels in the third quarter, as they outscored Ravenwood 7-2 over the first five minutes for a 29-21 advantage. The Raptors were able to hang around, however, with shots from Hawken and Alexis Ahlert to pull within two points four different times in the fourth.
Longer possessions and a closer score played a bit into Ravenwood’s hand, Goodwin said, especially since her team is used to attacking the basket.
“When it’s tight, momentum shifts so quickly,” Goodwin said. “With us not attacking like we normally do and having to value each possession and the clock, coming out with a win, we’ll take it.”
A bucket by Swayze pulled Ravenwood within one, then McPeek missed two foul shots to give the Raptors a chance in the final seconds, only to have Patton spoil it.
Franklin hit 3-of-4 free throws in the final five seconds to seal the win.
Posted on: 2/18/2014