Winters Mill's Natalie Berry shoots for two against Francis Scott Key February 9, 2018.
Winters Mill's Natalie Berry shoots for two against Francis Scott Key February 9, 2018. (Ken Koons/Carroll County Times)

Winters Mill faced a 13-point deficit against visiting Liberty in the third quarter of the second meeting this season between the Carroll County Athletic League foes.

The Falcons knew they had to regroup, and a layup from senior Kolby Brown sparked a 15-0 run at the end of the third frame. That carried into the fourth, enough for the Falcons to gain a 44-42 lead over the Lions.


Liberty wasn’t finished, however. Points from junior Jordan Nastos tied the score at 48-48 with 3 minutes, 17 seconds to play, but sophomore Natalie Berry put the Falcons up by three before Alex Bull’s 3-pointer tied it up 51-51 as time expired.

The Falcons took control in overtime and defeated the Lions 59-52 for their third victory in the last four games.

Winters Mill earned a split with Liberty, which defeated the Falcons back on Dec. 14.

“Every game in the county this season we know is going to be a battle and we always have hard-fought games, throw out any of the records, it doesn’t even matter,” Falcons coach Dave Wynne said. “When you’re playing Liberty, it’s always going to be a hard fought game. This season, we’ve just really had a lot of very close games anyway so I think our girls are hopefully starting to become a little bit battle-tested in some of these games and kind of seeing what it takes to grind out in important county games against good quality opponents.”

Wynne praised his girls for the intensity they showed in the fourth quarter to build their necessary comeback.

Brown and Berry scored 17 points apiece and each added four rebounds for the Falcons (6-5, 5-2 CCAL). Erin Snyder scored 12 points and added six rebounds.

“I think our team is very versatile,” Brown said. “Anyone can play any position, we can go all guards and some of us can play post so it’s a big threat to others because they don’t really know how to guard us.

“We can really run any offense and I think with a lot of shooters on the team, it’s a big threat.”

Six straight points from Bull helped the Lions lead early over the Falcons. Brown sank a 3-pointer to give the host team a two-point edge, 8-6, and they held on to a one-point lead at the end of the first quarter.

Snyder hit a 3 early in the second quarter, thanks to a back-handed assist from Madison Harmening, who led the Falcons with four helpers. The Lions opened an 8-0 scoring run to regain a two-point lead, 18-16, and held on for a 24-21 advantage at the break.

The Lions (4-9, 2-3) continued to power ahead in the third quarter, enough to hold on to a 42-33 lead at the end of the frame as the Falcons rallied back.

Bull led the Lions with 18 points and Thiem scored 15.

Berry went 9-for-10 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter and overtime combined. Her last two free throws secured the victory.

“In practice, we always practice our free throws so it paid off tonight,” Berry said.


Liberty (52): Kayla Allen 2, Rachel Thiem 15, Jordan Nastos 6, Alex Bull 18, Jess Littlejohn 6, Val Thompson 5.

Winters Mill (59): Erin Snyder 12, Allie Cullison 4, Natalie Berry 17, Kolby Brown 17, McKenzie Zepp 2, Tamyra Timmons 4, Kaitlyn Thompson 2.

Halftime: Liberty, 24-21.

JV result: WM, 46-12. (WM-Katelyn Heffner 11).