Late play puts Fossil Ridge girls into last 4-5A playoff spot

Posted Tuesday, Feb. 04, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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After a grueling three minutes in which Keller Fossil Ridge’s nine-point lead evaporated to nothing, the Panthers made two plays in the game’s final 9 seconds that sealed the game.

Jordan Lake cleared space under the basket, was fouled and converted a three-point play with 9 seconds left.

The Panthers then forced Keller Timber Creek into a turnover, its 38th of the game, and sank two free throws with 1.2 seconds to play to punctuate a 47-42 District 4-5A victory.

The win clinched the fourth and final playoff berth out of District 4-5A for Fossil Ridge (10-19, 6-8) and kept it out of a potential three-way playoff with Timber Creek (7-23, 4-10) and Justin Northwest.

The Panthers, who qualified for the playoffs for the first time in three years, will meet Arlington Bowie in the first round of the playoffs next week.

“It wasn’t pretty, but my kids played hard, never quit and kept fighting,” Fossil Ridge coach Stacy Henson said. “Our defense is pretty much the only way we create offense for ourselves and I just kept telling the girls at the end to relax. We only have nine players so we couldn’t really afford to play Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday.”

Down 41-32, Timber Creek pressed Fossil Ridge and forced the Panthers into three straight turnovers that Timber Creek converted into two Laniya Taylor free throws, a 3-point shot by Raven Rogers and a Molly Danielson free throw.

Danielson made a basket with 53 seconds left to make it 41-40 before Fossil Ridge hit one of two free throws with half a minute left. Taylor tied the game with 15 seconds left on a layup before the game-deciding scenario.

Lake and Jennifer Licerio led Fossil Ridge with 13 points apiece, while Timber Creek got 13 from Taylor and 12 from Rogers.

Timber Creek stayed in the game in the second quarter, getting three 3-pointers from Rogers. Despite making 1 of 6 free throws in the quarter and turning the ball over 20 times in the half, they only trailed 22-20.

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