By Craig Clary, firstname.lastname@example.org
10:21 PM EST, February 15, 2013
New Town’s Tiana Davis hit two high-arching free throws with 9.9 seconds left and the visiting Titans’ watched a desperation three-point attempt go wide at the buzzer as they held on for a 48-45 victory over host Western Tech Friday night.
The win advanced the Titans (16-5 overall, 11-0 league) to the Baltimore County championship game on Tuesday, Feb. 19, at host Milford Mill.
Western Tech (15-6, 9-1) would have advanced to the county championship game for the second straight year but came up just short.
“We had to get that win, and we had to make those foul shots,” said Davis, whose only three points came from the foul line in the final 1:28 of the fourth quarter.
“I’m very excited and I’m proud of the girls,” New Town coach Gena Young said. “They really came through in the clutch, with knocking down those free throws and playing defense when we needed to step up.”
Destiney Taylor-Betts and Sydney Hines scored 14 points each and Keyaira Wilson (8 points) and Candis Taylor (6) chipped in for the winners.
Western Tech was led offensively by Ebonee Dixon (14 points), Daija Coles and Sydney Clopton (9 each) and Deja Dennis (7) and on the boards by Autumn Tapley.
Western Tech trailed 23-20 at halftime, but rallied with a 7-0 in the third quarter.
Tapley and Coles scored to give the Wolverines a lead and Dennis’ blocked shot led to a jumper by Coles.
Clopton’s free throw pushed the lead to 27-23 before the Titans responded with a 10-run that began with a three-pointer by Hines and ended with a follow shot and a free throw by Mishawn Conyers.
New Town took a 39-30 lead into the fourth quarter, but the Wolverines chipped away and pulled within one, 42-41, on Clopton’s running bank shot.
A free throw by Davis was answered by Dixon’s foul shot and the Wolverines stayed within one.
With 1:06 left, Hines made a layup for a 44-41 lead and five seconds later Dixon’s jumper from the foul line cut it to 44-43.
Two free throws from Taylor-Betts gave the Titans another three-point advantage, but Dennis converted a jumper from just inside the foul line with 17 seconds left to cut the Titans’ lead to 46-45.
Davis caught the ensuing inbounds pass and answered with the clinching free throws.
“All week, I worked on it (free throw shooting) and this game I came out and did it,” Davis said.