Double trouble: Cros-Lex duo records double-double performances to top Armada
Tied at 46 with two minutes remaining, it was anyone’s game, and the last time the Croswell-Lexington and Armada girls basketball teams played, the game belonged to the Tigers.
But last night, victory would belong to the Pioneers.
Junior Isabella Edwards would give Cros-Lex a narrow lead with 1:40 to go, but Armada sophomore Ashlyn Upton answered right back, 48-48.
Neither team managed to score when, with 45 seconds to go, Armada called timeout in hopes of stirring some kind of offense, but to no avail.
With 30 seconds left now, Cros-Lex used its final timeout, the score still tied.
The Pioneers returned to the court and turned the ball over, but on the inbounds pass, sophomore Emma Noll got the steal and found fellow sophomore MacKenzy Dennison, who worked her way into the paint for a layup, 50-48.
Parents cheered and the student section inched its way out of the bleachers and closer to the court, jumping in celebration. But 15 seconds still remained.
“[Armada] made a couple runs on us and we started to panic, which is usually what we do,” Cros-Lex head coach Katelyn Noll said. “I just called timeout and told them, ‘Get a drink and just relax for a minute, take a deep breath, no reason to panic. Just keep playing basketball, keep playing good defense and we’ll win this game.’ And that’s exactly what we did.”
Upton made her way from the opposite baseline to the top of the key before she was stopped by a pair of Pioneers. At this point, less than two seconds remained when the Tigers called another timeout to draw up one final play that folded under the Pioneers’ pressure.
Cros-Lex claimed a 50-48 victory.
“I think the team really needed that,” Katelyn Noll said. “It was a good confidence booster and will help us through the second half of the season as we play all these teams for the second time.”
The win puts the Pioneers at 3-5 in the BWAC, while dropping the Tigers to 5-3. Noll called it a “full team effort,” as it was the team’s second-highest-scoring game of the season.
“I think we scored 27 points by halftime and that’s usually our final score,” she said. “Our three subs off the bench contributed just as much as any of the starters last night. No matter who we put in the game, they gave 110% and that’s exciting.”
Dennison had a season-high 16 points, coupled with 11 rebounds. Sophomore Ava Oleski posted a double-double as well with 10 points and 12 rebounds, and Edwards chipped in with eight points and seven rebounds. Seniors Aubrey Connelly and Brooklyn Schultz came off the bench to add six apiece.
Ashlyn Upton and her sister Sydney Upton, a junior, led the Tigers with 14 and 10 points, respectively. Junior Marti Obry stepped up with eight points on the night, as Armada was missing two of its senior starters due to injury.
Armada will remain on the road at Imlay City (11-3, 6-1) and Cros-Lex will travel to Algonac (4-8, 1-7) on Jan. 31.
For in-game updates and other news, follow Calli on Twitter @ newberry_calli
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