Princeton Times


January 18, 2013

Princeton Tigerettes fall to Timberwolves by 1 point, 67-66

PRINCETON — If you love girls’ high school basketball, then Princeton Senior High was the place to be Friday night Jan. 11. The match-up of third-ranked Princeton and the seventh-ranked Spring Valley Timberwolves would not disappoint.

Fifteen three-pointers, 11 ties,  game tied at the half and last second shots to close out the game as the Timberwolves would walk away the winner by score of 67-66. The first quarter of play had the Timberwolves with the tip-off and quick bucket at the 7:55 mark. Princeton’s McKenzie Akers knotted it all up off an assist by Khadija Payne.

Spring Valley went up by one after a missed free throw, but the Tigerettes paid back the favor with a basket and one by Akers. Akers scored again off an assist by Marissa Mullins and Mullins scored off an Akers assist.

The score was within a bucket, favor Princeton, at 3:15. The Tigerettes started to pull away. Mullins and Aker’s rallied to put their team up by as many as seven prior to a Payne free throw.

The end of quarter read 18-12 — Princeton. Spring Valley turned the ball over to start the second quarter. The Timberwolves rallied to bring the score within 1 while holding the Tigerettes scoreless for three minutes. Hannah Preservati connected on a trey to put the Tigerettes up by four.

The Timberwolves continued their aggressive play using their height to their advantage and tied it all up at 22 all, Timeout Timberwolves. Preservati tallied another trey, the second of three this evening, only to have the Timberwolves respond. Akers had a trey of her own with 3 minutes remaining before the half. The Timberwolves were only down by one before Tigerette Mullins went 2-2 from the line with 4.6 seconds left on the clock. As time expired the Timberwolves Brooke Heck’s long three-point attempt found the bottom of the basket as they headed into halftime 31 all.

Fast and furious began the third quarter of play. The Timberwolves scored seven unanswered points until  Princeton’s Akers scored at the 6-minute mark. Preservati got the Tigerettes within two following her third three-pointer of the night. Neither team got anything going offensively for the next three minutes.

The Tigerettes went 2-4 from the charity stripe to go up by one. Mullins added another two only to have the Timberwolves Kassidy Lemmons put up another three, you guessed it, with time expiring. Score 50-50. Kassidy Lemmons scored another 3 to start the fourth quarter of play. The game held steady within three until Akers’ three-pointer tied it all up at the halfway mark.

Spring Valley went to the line for two but added only one. Both teams were held scoreless for 2 1/2 minutes. The Tigerettes’ Mullins would go to the free throw line and tie it all up again with 1:34 remaining. Timeout Princeton.

Akers would drive the lane and be denied the basket but draw the foul. Score 66-65 Princeton. With 9 seconds left on the clock, the Timberwolves would find 6-foot-tall Jordan Ratcliff underneath and score the easy basket.

Akers would put up a last-second shot, but it didn’t fall. Timberwolves won by one. Akers would lead the Tigerettes with 37 points, followed by Hanna Preservati’s nine and Marissa Mullins’ additional nine. Preservati and Rachel Surface each had eight rebounds. The Tigerettes also came away with a road win Tuesday night as they tallied another conference win against the St. Albans Red Dragons by score of 52-49.

Akers was the leading scorer, with 20 points, followed by Hannah Preservati’s three treys for nine points. Khadija Payne with nine, and Jessica Inman scored four. Ashley Culicerto and Rachel Surface recorded two apiece. The Tigerettes will be back at home Saturday, Jan. 19, as they take on Ripley and Tuesday night, Jan. 22, as they take on border county rival Summers County Lady Bobcats.

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