Cordele Dispatch, Cordele, GA

Local Sports

January 26, 2013

Youngblood's OT shot helps lift Wildcats to victory

Cordele — Starter Jordan Howard hit a game-winning basket just before the buzzer sounded to lift Crisp Academy’s Wildcats to a thrilling 50-49 double-overtime victory over Highland Christian Friday night.

It was little-used Lindsey Youngblood, though, who wore the hero’s cloak as if not for the 3-pointer he banked off the glass into the hoop from 25-feet away there wouldn’t have been a second extra session or a home team win.

“I think those are the first points of the season for Lindsey (who was in the game as a safety outlet on a play set up for a teammate) and they couldn’t have come at a better time,” jubilant Crisp coach Jodie Hays said.

Lady Wildcats mentor Gina Mitchell also wore the wide smile of a winner and understandably so as her team romped to its 21st victory in 23 starts by crushing the visiting Lady Eagles, 68-14.

The Crisp teams will be back in action on Tuesday, hosting fellow Region 3-A member Georgia Christian in a 6:30 p.m. doubleheader.

Wildcats 50, Eagles 49

In avenging an earlier 54-51 loss to Highland, the Wildcats rallied from deficits of 10-8, 21-14 and 25-24 to send their game into the first overtime tied at 38 despite the loss of Hunter Chambers and Banks Folsom to fouls.

It was after Jeff McKinney joined that pair on the sidelines via his fifth foul that Younglood canned his clutch shot from deep off the left wing with seven seconds left to tie matters at 45 and necessitate another five-minute period.

When 20-point score Jake Smith became the fourth Crisp player to foul out, the home team was forced to compete the last 90 seconds or so with just four players.

One of those was Howard who after Highland had taken a 49-48 lead on a free throw with 15 seconds remaining took a pass from Chip Posey and promptly nailed a buzzer-beating 4-5 footer. That shot capped his 14-point night and triggered his team’s well-deserved victory celebration.

“Coming into this one, I thought we had made great strides over our last three games,” Hays said. “In the early going, though, we took a step backwards as we came out looking dead and couldn’t seem to get anything going.

“But after not showing any intensity at all and not getting our inside guys involved in the offense the entire first half, we came back out after  halftime and looked like an entirely different team.

“While showing a lot of emotion and getting back into the game, we unfortunately found ourselves in foul trouble. In the end, I was very proud of our guys for pulling ourselves out of the hole we dug the first half and responding to the challenge put forth to them at intermission.”

Highland’s Tucker Bruce led all scorers with 23 points and got double-digit assistance in defeat from Jaylen Hiller with 11.

Score by Quarters

Highland Christian 10-11-4-13-7-4 — 49

Crisp Academy 8-6-10-14-7-5 — 50


   Highland (49) — Julius King 3, Trey Yates 3, Tucker Bruce 23, Dusty Thomas 7, Casey Conn 2,  Jaylen Hiller 11.

   Team totals: field goals 16; free throws 16 of 25 (64%); fouls 17; 3-pointers — Yates 1; fouled out — none.

   Crisp Academy (50) — Jordan Howard 14, Hunter Chambers 4, Jake Smith 20, Banks Folsom 6, Chip Posey 4, Lindsey Youngblood 3, Jeff McKinney, Cullen Brooks.

  Team totals: field goals 20; free throws 5 of 11 (45.5%); fouls 23; 3-pointers — Smith 4, Youngblood 1; fouled out — Chambers, Smith, Folsom, McKinney.

Lady ’Cats 68, Lady Eagles 14

Even though her team owned an obviously secure 30-14 advantage at halftime, Mitchell wasn’t very happy with its performance to that point and made that adamant clear to her players during the break.

“I told our girls they had better not left Highland score again and they obviously took that warning to heart as they didn’t allow a single point the last two quarters,” Mitchell said.

“In holding them scoreless like that, we didn’t change any of our tactics but simply executed instead and did so on both ends of the floor as we had been pretty lackadaisical on offense, too, in the second period.”

All 10 players to see action for Crisp broke into the scoring column. Madi Mitchell led the way with 16 and also shared the lead for rebounds with Sidney Folsom as each had 8. Jay Jay Yawn netted 10 points.

Score by Quarters

Highland Christian 5-9-0-0 — 14

Crisp Academy 18-12-23-15 — 68


   Highland (14) — Kaleigh Rice 2, Krista Nordin 3, Anna Lee 2, Megan Maragunia 7, Krista Wells, Kayla Taylor.

   Team totals: field goals 3; free throws 5 of 7 (71.4%); fouls 14; 3-pointers — Nordin 1; fouled out — Nordin.

   Crisp Academy (68) — Sidney Folsom 7, Parker Krause 4, Kayla Childers 2, Kara White 9, Maddie Krause 2, Kendall Wilson 4, Emily Faircloth 2, Jay Jay Yawn 10, Bree Carpenter 2, Madi Mitchell 26.

   Team totals: field goals 31; free throws 6 of 16 (37.5%); fouls 11; 3-pointers — none; fouled out — none.


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