ENTERPRISE - West Union was able to fend off a determined comeback by Hickory Flat in its Division 3-1A contest and win 67-62.
Annie Orman led the Lady Eagles with a game-high 40 points.
“I knew it was a big game, we lost to them in the division championship last year, so we all knew that we had to come out and show up this time,” Orman said. “I head-faked a lot tonight and I knew they were going to fall for that, so I used that a lot. It was a big win and we are excited.”
Despite Orman’s 40 points on the night and R’Daztiny Harris’ 39 for Hickory Flat, the game came down to West Union’s ability to withstand the pressure and convert free-throw attempts over the final two minutes of play after Orman exited the game with her fifth foul with 2:23 left. The Lady Eagles played the game minus another key starter, Eden Conlee, who was out with an injury.
“R’Daztiny Harris is hard to guard, there’s no doubt about that,” West Union coach J.C. Hayles said. “We tried to clog the lane up as much as we could and make her work hard the entire time.”
Emma Callicutt was 4 for 4 from the free throw line in the closing minutes. She also drove in and hit a crucial layup off an inbounds pass. Callicutt finished the night with 10 points, including a 3-pointer.
Ella Kate Taylor and Anna Carwyle both hit three of four free throws to help ice the game in West Union’s favor. Carwyle scored seven points while Taylor finished with six.
West Union built a 28-16 lead at the half after they outscored Hickory Flat 17-7 in the second quarter.
Hickory Flat clawed its way back in the second half behind the scoring of Harris and Vonterrica Garner, who scored all 10 of her points in the second half. Hickory Flat owned the scoring edge in the second half by a 46-39 margin.
West Union improved to 2-0 in Division 3-1A with the win and is 8-6 overall.
(B) West Union 90, Hickory Flat 81
Hickory Flat led after a quarter at 19-18, but West Union came back to grab the lead at the half by 42-37 score.
The Eagles finished the second half with a scoring flurry that was almost matched by the Rebels at 48-44, but that cushion held up in the 90-81 win.
Luke Willard led the Eagles with 27 points and Brandon Phillips came off the bench to pour in 21. Boo Robertson hit for 12 and Sam Callicutt finished with 10 points.
Hickory Flat's Wesley Green led all scorers with 29 points. Jonah Baker scored 19, Drew Wilson added 17 and Jeremiah Thompson totaled 10 points.
Turning Point: West Union girls hit 10 of 12 free throws over the final two minutes of play to clinch the win.
Point Maker: Annie Orman scored 40 points to lead West Union to the win.
Talking Point: "The big deal to the win was that we all came together down the stretch. We had several players to step up and make free throws. Everybody came together when they could have folded and we pulled it out and I’m happy for them.” – Hayles