WILMINGTON — For the third straight year, division champions Wilmington and Williamsburg met to wrap up the regular season in the Bud Phillips scholarship game.
The meeting of the two girls basketball champions lived up to the hype.
Sami McCord’s free throw with 4.2 seconds left in regulation Saturday gave Wilmington a 52-51 victory over Williamsburg at Fred Summers Court.
The Wildcats (16-4) had one final chance to win, but Madi Ogden couldn’t get a clean shot away as the buzzer sounded.
Wilmington head coach Zach Williams used two timeouts in the final minute, the last of which came with 7.2 seconds left to set up what proved to be the winning play.
“I didn’t like the way we were moving,” Williams said. “Earlier this season I let it play out, and it came back to bite us. I tried something different this time. We drew something up. Nothing that we’ve really practiced but nothing hard. We just tried to get into one of our best players, Sami McCord’s hands.”
McCord took the inbounds pass and drove straight to the basket where she was fouled. She missed the first free throw but made the second to give Wilmington the win.
It was the host Hurricane (12-9) that jumped out to a quick start, opening up a 20-9 advantage. Their lead was 25-15 in the waning moments of the first half.
Williamsburg went on a 13-2 run that began just before the break to take its first lead, 28-27, with 5:36 left in the third.
Once again the hosts would answer with a run of their own. This time it was a 10-2 run that spilled over to the start of the fourth quarter. Back-to-back threes by Karlie Morgan and Sophie Huffman ended the run.
Morgan’s three ended the third quarter. It bounced off the rim, straight up into the air, and straight through the net.
“Karlie has been busting her butt every day in practice,” Williams said. “She brings a great attitude every day. She hasn’t hit a three in a while. She was due. I told her when she came off at the quarter, ‘that shot gave me chills.’ My hair was up. I was excited. That was a huge shot.”
Williamsburg responded with a 12-2 run of its own to retake the lead, 47-46, with 3:23 left. A three-point play by McCord put Wilmington back on top.
Kiana Dauwe, who had an impressive game for Williamsburg, answered with a pair of free throws to tie the game at 49 with 2:03 left.
Katie Murphy gave Wilmington the lead again with 1:36 left, 51-49. Dauwe answered to level the score at 51 with 1:12 left. After back-to-back turnovers, Wilmington would run the clock down to set up McCord’s winning free throw.
Huffman led Wilmington with 14 points. McCord added 13 points and seven rebounds. Murphy had 10 points and six rebounds.
Dauwe led Williamsburg with 21 points and five rebounds. Ogden had 11 points and six rebounds, while Kirstyn Thomas had 10 points and seven rebounds.
Wilmington improved to 4-1 against Williamsburg since the Hurricane moved to the Southern Buckeye Conference. Williams was pleased to get a test from a program that has excelled in the National Division.
“They’re well-coached,” Williams said. “Their girls program down there is solid. They always compete. They’re just a quality program. They’re going to be just fine in the tournament.”
Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020
At Fred Summers Court
Wilmington 52, Williamsburg 51
(51) WILLIAMSBURG (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Emily Hart 1-0-2-4, Kirstyn Thomas 4-2-0-10, Madi Ogden 4-0-3-11, Paige Fisher 2-0-1-5, Kiana Dauwe 6-2-7-21. TOTALS 17-4-13-51.
(52) WILMINGTON (fg-3fg-ft-tp) Jasmine Jamiel 3-2-1-9, Sami McCord 5-1-2-13, Sophie Huffman 3-2-6-14, Katie Murphy 4-0-2-10, Karlie Morgan 2-1-1-6. TOTALS 17-6-12-52.
FIELD GOALS: WMB 17/48 (Dauwe 6/15, Thomas 4/7, Ogden 4/10); WIL 17/42 (McCord 5/10, Murphy 4/9)
3 POINT FIELD GOALS: WMB 4/13 (Dauwe 2/4); WIL 6/16 (Huffman 2/3, Jamiel 2/6)
FREE THROWS: WMB 13/15 (Dauwe 7/8); WIL 12/17 (Huffman 6/6)
REBOUNDS: WMB 35 (Fisher 8, Thomas 7, Dauwe 5); WIL 26 (McCord 7, Murphy 6, Morgan 6)
ASSISTS: WMB 4; WIL 11 (Murphy 3)
STEALS: WMB 6; WIL 7 (McCord 2, Huffman 2)
BLOCKED SHOTS: WMB 1; WIL 2
TURNOVERS: WMB 15; WIL 11
Matt Sexton covers high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @MattSextonPxP.