By Bob Flynn
Register Sports Writer
Berea Community Lady Pirates came back from three points down with 1:25 seconds left in the game to pull out a 44-43 win over Model Friday in a district showdown.
Hannah Haycraft hit two big baskets in the final 1:15 seconds, the second with just 12.5 seconds left in the game turned out to be the game-winner for the Lady Pirates.
Berea (8-4) led most of the game and by as much as seven points, but could never put Model (3-11) away. Hayley Hunt gave Model its first lead of the game at 40-39 with 2:10 left on the clock.
After Jordan Sandefur tied it at 40-40 with a free throw, Kasi Schneid gave Model a lead once more with a long three-pointer with 1:35 left.
Haycraft pulled the Lady Pirates to within one at 43-42. Model tried to run some time off the clock, but Schneid was called for a double-dribble with 27 seconds left, giving Berea another chance.
Victoria Sexton tried to give the Lady Pirates the lead with 19 seconds left, but had her shot in the lane blocked by Emily Jackson.
Schneid was called for a foul in the scramble for the loose ball after the block, setting up Haycraft’s heroics, and she would not be denied, driving the lane and hitting the game-winner despite heavy defensive pressure by Mallie Cornett.
“We got down three and we told them in the time out, ‘Don’t panic. We’ve got a lot of time here. All we have to do is get the ball back and see what happens,’” Berea coach Jerry Bingham said. “I don’t think we played particularly well tonight. But at the end where we needed to execute things we did, so we did a good job of that. But it’s a good win and we’ll take it.”
Sandefur lead the Lady Pirates with a game-high 14 points, while Chase Fain had 11, Sexton and Haycraft had six points each, Ashley Sizemore added four, Alex Horn three and Miranda Montgomery had two points.
Three Lady Patriots finished in double figures, led by Hunt and Cornett with 11 points each. Schneid had 10 points, while Darrian Botts had nine and Jackson had two points.
Model coach Ronald Preece was disappointed with the loss, but was pleased with how his young team hung in and had a chance to win at the end.
“They played hard and played a little smarter this time than the last time out. This was a new situation for us having a lead and trying to run the clock out,” Preece said. “We panicked a little bit and our youth showed up there at the end. But I’m proud of the way they battled all night.”
Model will be back in action today at home against Whitefield Academy at 6 p.m., while the Lady Pirates travel to northern Kentucky today to take on Calvary Christian at 4:30 p.m.