The WHS girls took advantage of opportunities at the foul line through the night, and the freebies kept them close during the second quarter. The successful free throws were also the telling blows as the game drew to its dramatic close.
Shearmire expected the occasional Lady Panther’s offensive outbursts and prepped his squad for the likelihood.
“We told our girls not to think in terms of the whole game, but with each possession,” he said. “Chelsey made a big impact in the third quarter and I think was playing with a chip on her shoulder, which served her well in this game.
“And Faith [Woodring] is just so quick to the basket and knows how to use her body to draw the fouls, which she did several times there toward the end of the game.”
Senior Abbye Shearmire led the Lady Roos with 15 points, including a healthy fare of long-range shots. Woodring and Kailin Davis had a dozen points apiece.
The team effort was evident and constant, with the Weatherford’s four seniors, two freshmen and the mix of underclass in between contributing.
The ploy of collapsing a WHS defender on NC’s big post player throughout the match had the desired effect of making Williams work constantly for an inlet pass, which sent her to the bench to re-coop her breath.
Despite an eventual 58-43 loss, the Weatherford boys made a competitive accounting of themselves in the first half, contesting the boards successfully on both ends of the floor.
The Kangaroos kept the North Crowley run-and-shoot tendencies under control, as the first half was a repeated progression of the Panthers creating a margin and the WHS boys reeling them back in.
Trailing by just a handful at the half, the third period was not as fruitful for the Roos, as NC’s offense began clicking and outside shooting became more effective.
Scoring for WHS was virtually by committee. Tony Banks led with nine, while Sam Couch, Lane Guest and Ryan Merrill had eight, seven and six points, respectively.