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Lady Cats down Central 53-49

|Carol Heard

Clutch free-throw shooting in the final minute by April Thomas and Bria Harris enabled Coach Latreisha Moon’s Bainbridge High School Lady Cats to pull out a 53-49 home victory over the Thomas County Central High School Lady Yellow Jackets on Friday night.

A free throw by Thomas with just 46 seconds left in the game gave the Bearcats a five-point lead, at 51-46.

A three-pointer by Latkisha Williams at the 33-second mark cut the lead to two, at 51-49.

Williams had a chance to tie the game 51-51 with 18 seconds remaining but missed consecutive free throw attempts. Harris then hit consecutive free throws at the 10.4- and 9.6-second marks to seal the victory.

They took control early, jumping out to an 11-0 lead.

The run started with a layup off the right glass by Briana Wade at the 7:20 mark, continued with a rebound and put-back by Jasmine Kelly at the 6:44 mark, and a driving layup off the left glass by Thomas at the 5:05 mark.

It concluded with a free throw and layup off the right glass by Harris at the 5:11 and 4:35 marks, and two free throws by Thomas at the 4:10 mark.

A jumper from the left side by the Lady Yellow Jackets Jacgura Byrd at the 3:47 mark broke the scoring run and cut the Lady Cats’ lead to 11-2.

The Lady Yellow Jackets went on to outscore the Lady Cats 8-2 the rest of the quarter and trailed by just two, 13-11, entering the second quarter.

Harris’s rebound and layup off the left glass with 58 seconds remaining until halftime put the Bearcats up by seven, at 24-17. They were ahead 28-17 at halftime and 41-29 entering the fourth quarter.

“We played very well for three quarters,” Coach Moon said after the game. “We let them come back in the fourth quarter, but we hung on in the end.”

The Lady Cats were led by Thomas with a game-high 22 points. Harris pumped in 17, Wade and Jasmine Kelly added six apiece and Ri’Chana Jackson scored two.