Lady Dawgs fall to Lady Mustangs 45-42 in overtime
By TJ MAXWELL
After winning five-consecutive road games as part of a 6-0 run since opening the season with a 40-34 loss to Leander at home, the Copperas Cove Lady Dawgs suffered just their second loss of the season in a 45-42 loss to the Marble Falls Lady Mustangs Tuesday night at Bulldawg Gymnasium.
The Lady Dawgs struggled to find their rhythm offensively with their second-lowest scoring outing of the season with the lowest outing coming in the opener to Leander.
It was a positive start for the Lady Dawgs as they were able to penetrate the lane and draw early fouls where senior Yvonna Drayton and junior Elianah Eady-Smith connected on all four attempts to take a 4-0 lead.
The Lady Mustangs responded with a basket by junior Tea Rodriguez and a putback by sophomore Avie Nail.
Cove regained the lead 6-4 with a basket by Drayton on the assist by senior guard Jordan McGhee before a free throw by junior Emma Koziel and a streaking basket by Rodriguez put Marble Falls on top 7-6 with 1:59 left in the first quarter.
Two more free throws by Cove’s Drayton closed out the first-quarter scoring with the Lady Dawgs leading 8-7.
Cove extended their lead to six in the second quarter with 3 for 4 free throws by Drayton, putbacks by Eady-Smith and Drayton and a basket by McGhee. A three-pointer and a free throw by Rodriguez accounted for Marbles Falls’ scoring for a 17-11 score with 3:05 left in the first half.
Two more free throws and a steal for a layup by Rodriguez cut Cove’s lead to two, 17-15.
A pair of free throws by senior guard Diamonique “DD” Barnhart and a length of court basket by Zeigler helped Cove go ahead 21-16 with 7.5 seconds left before two more Rodriguez free throws closed the first half with Cove leading 21-18.
A free throw by Rodriguez and a basket by sophomore Lexia Edwards knotted the game a 21-all to open the third quarter.
Two free throws by Drayton pushed Cove back in front 23-21 with 3:25 left before three-straight baskets by Marble Falls flipped the lead to the Lady Mustangs, 27-23. A pair of baskets by Edwards and one by senior Gia Lemon led the way.
A floater in the lane by Senior Samaria Bostick cut into the Marble Falls’ lead, but a streaking basket by Nail pushed the lead back to four 29-25 to end the third quarter.
A steal for a layup and a pair of free throws by Lemon helped push the lead to seven, 33-26, before a basket by Bostick and a putback by Drayton brought Cove within three, 33-30, with 4:41 remaining.
After another free throw by Lemon, a pair of driving baskets by Cove’s Bostick and Zeigler knotted the game at 34-all with 2:43 left in regulation.
Free throws by Rodriguez edged Marble Falls ahead 36-34 before a basket and a pair of free throws by junior guard Ta’Shayla Marrie made it a 38-36 Cove lead with 56.3 seconds left.
Nail then scored on a streaking basket down the baseline to send the game into overtime at 38-all.
Marble Falls drew first blood in the four-minute overtime period with two free throws by junior Emma Bindeil. Marrie was able to get one point back from the free throw line, but a putback by Edwards gave Marble Falls a 42-39 lead.
A basket by Cove’s McGhee and one by Marble Falls’ Edwards pushed the score to 44-41.
Cove pulled within two on 1 for 2 free throws by McGriff.
After back-and-forth turnovers, Marble Falls junior Alyssa Berkman made it a three-point game with 1 for 2 free throws for the final score of 45-42.
Drayton finished with a double-double to lead the Lady Dawgs. She had a game-high 16 poinst along with 12 rebounds and a steal. Bostick added six points and five rebounds followed by Eady-Smith (6 pts, 2 rebs), Zeigler (4 pts, stl), McGhee (4 pts, 2 rebs, asst), Marrie (3 pts, 7 rebs), Barnhart (2 pts, 4 rebs, stl) and McGriff (1 pt, 3 rebs).
Rodriguez led the Marble Falls’ scoring with 15 points, three steals and two assists. Edwards added 10 points, seven rebounds and three blocks followed by Lemon (6 pts), Nail (6 pts, 5 rebs), Koziel (5 pts, 5 stls, 4 rebs), Bindseil (2 pts, 4 rebs, stl) and Berkman (1 pt).
The Lady Dawgs finished 12 for 41 from the field, including 0 for 3 from beyond the arc, and were 18 for 29 from the free throw line.
The Lady Dawgs started their seven-game win streak with a 59-46 win over the Burnet Lady Bulldogs last Monday before reeling off six-straight wins to win the Leander Rouse Tournament to close out a successful week on Saturday.
The Lady Dawgs defeated hosts Rouse 61-46 to open the tournament on Friday with Drayton notching a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds while adding four steals to lead the Lady Dawgs. Bostick added 14 points in the win.
The Lady Dawgs then downs Lago Vista 54-31 in game two on Thursday with Bostick leading the way with a double-double of 14 points 12 rebounds followed by Drayton (12 pts, 8 rebs, 5 stls).
On day two, the Lady Dawgs defeated Hutto 52-47 in the early game with Bostick again leading the way with 13 points and seven boards with sophomore Skakaira Zeigler adding 10 points and six boards.
Game two was a runaway as the Lady Dawgs won 72-9 over Pflugerville Connally with sophomore Iliana Buitron leading the way with 13 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Eady-Smith added 11 points.
The Lady Dawgs completed their run to the championship with a pair of rubber matches against Rouse and Hutto with similar results.
The Lady Dawgs defeated Rouse 44-37 in the semi-final game with Drayton notching 10 points and seven boards to lead the way.
In the championship game against Hutto, Marrie and Eady-Smith both scored 13 points to lead the team to victory while senior Danielle McGriff added 10 points in the 65-52 win.
Drayton was named the tournament’s most valuable player while Marrie was named to the all-tournament team.
The Lady Dawgs are currently playing in the Marble Falls Varsity Tournament in Marble Falls before traveling to Waco on Tuesday to face the Lady Lions with road games at Lampasas next Tuesday at Midway the following Friday before returning the Bulldawg Gymnasium for the final non-district clash on Dec. 7 against Georgetown before opening 12-6A play at home again Harker Heights on Dec. 10.