Girls basketball: Mavs’ comeback falls short in 51-45 loss to Shorecrest
Despite a 54-42 loss to Shorecrest Thursday night, the Lady Mavs basketball team got the help they needed on Senior Night to reach the district tournament. Both Shorewood and Meadowdale came into tonight tied in the standings, but Meadowdale had the tiebreaker after defeating Shorewood in both games. Fortunately for Meadowdale, Stanwood won tonight 54-42, qualifying the Mavs for the eighth and final tournament spot.
The Mavs were in the game until the last minute. Senior Mackenzie Bretz made a put-back with 1:00 to play to cut the deficit to 45-43, but the Scots ended up putting the game away by scoring 6 points in the final minute to win 51-45. Onyie Chibuogwu led all scorers with 16 points while Hailey Costello led all Mavs with 13.
Michelle Yong hit a 3-pointer to give the Scots a 3-2 lead early in the contest, but Ndey Sonko came back and made a fading jump shot to give Meadowdale a 4-3 lead. After a free throw by Bretz made it 5-3, the Scots dominated the first quarter. The Mavs did not score another point against the aggressive zone defense sent out by Shorecrest; the Scots forced seven turnovers in the quarter.
That defense spurned the Scots on a 12-0 run. Chibuogwu gave Shorecrest a 9-5 lead after getting her own rebound and making the put-back. With 45 seconds to go, Jazlyn Owens hit a 3-pointer from the corner to increase Shorecrest’s lead to 14-5. A free throw later, the Scots held a 15-5 lead going into the second quarter.
After a quick bucket made it 17-5, Meadowdale started to climb back into the game. The Mavs went on a 10-0 run in the next six minutes, and it started with a free throw by Bretz. The next possession, Sonko hit a turn-around jump shot to make it 17-8 and the Mavs continued to score points down low. Meadowdale managed to get around the zone by driving into the key and making short jump shots.
On the other side, the Maverick zone defense was giving the Scots fits. Shorecrest was able to pass around the zone easily in the first quarter, but struggled to do so in the second. Costello hit a 3-pointer with 2:15 left in the quarter to make it 17-15 Scots. Their next possession, Keyonna Jones managed to hit a jump shot to end the Meadowdale run. The Scots added a free throw before the quarter ended to push their lead to 20-15 going into halftime.
The game started to open up in the second half. Both sides attempted to push the pace, plus the three-point shooters came alive on both sides, further opening up the court. Speaking of threes, senior Jaclyn Barhoum hit one to start the second half, making it 20-18. Jones was unimpressed. She hit a 3-pointer on the Scots’ next possession and then another on the one after to increase the Scots’ lead to 26-18. Then Uju Chibuogwu’s three made it 29-19 with 6:00 to play in the quarter.
Sonko stopped the bleeding when she hit a short jumper to make it 29-21, and then Barhoum stole a pass at half court and went back the other way for a lay-in, making it 29-23. The Lady Mavs added three more points off free throws before Lindsey Shattuck got an offensive rebound and made the put-back to push the Scot lead to 33-26 with a minute left in the quarter. The score remained that way heading in to the fourth.
Chibuogwu increased Shorecrest’s the lead to nine after getting her own rebound and made a putback, making it 35-26. Costello responded by hitting another 3-pointer to cut the deficit to 35-29. Jones once again silenced the crowd with a three to make it 38-29 with 5:30 to play. Chibuogwu then hit a jump shot while fouled and made the free throw, and the score was 41-31 Scots.
The Mavs went on a quick 5-0 run that was capped by a 3-pointer from Ciarra Hart to make it 41-36 with 3:09 to go. With 1:30 to go, Costello got the Mavs within four points with another 3-pointer. Bretz hit a putback with a minute to go to close Shorecrest’s lead to 45-43. Jones was fouled with 37.1 seconds to go and got a one-and-one opportunity. She made both and it was 47-43, Scots. The Mavs came up empty on their next possession and had to foul again. Chibuogwu made both of her free throws to push the lead to 49-43. Costello came back the other way and hit a put-back, then Jones got the inbounds pass and was fouled. She missed both free throws but Chibuogwu got the rebound and scored, and the Scots closed out a 51-45 win.
The win cemented the Scots’ third-place finish in the Wesco South conference with a record of 10-3 (15-5 overall). The Mavs fell to 5-8 (7-13 in conference). They will play in the first playoff round at Everett Feb. 12 at a time to be determined.
Meadowdale scorers: Kearstin Franco 2; Ciarra Hart 3; Jaclyn Barhoum 6; Mackenzie Bretz 9; Ndey Sonko 12; Hailey Costello 13
Shorecrest scorers: Savannah Tidwell 2; Jazlyn Owens 3; Jalyn Hizey 3; Uju Chibuogwu 3; Wurrie Njadoe 4; Lindsey Shattuck 5; Keyonna Jones 15; Onyie Chibuogwu 16
— By Quint Turner