Bradwell Institute’s gym resonated with cheers Tuesday night as fans were treated to an action-packed doubleheader in which the Lady Tigers eked out a 44-41 win in overtime and the Tigers beat Camden, 83-75, after trailing for most of the first half.
Coach Faye Baker saw her Lady Tigers improve to 10-8 overall and 7-4 in Region 3-AAAAA.
Baker said the Camden girls played better this time around but had unforced turnovers and missed some easy shots that allowed the Camden girls to stay in the game.
“Same thing we’ve been doing all year,” Baker said. “We can’t seem to fix that. That is one of the reasons why we never were able to gain the lead. We had opportunities to score. We didn’t capitalize on it.”
A turnover late in the fourth quarter allowed the Wildcats to hit a layup and send the game into overtime.
“And that could have been a momentum turner but we still were able to win … They had heart and continued to work hard and did what it took to get the win, and I’m happy about it,” Baker said.
Individual scoring was not available, but Baker said Leitia Leiataua stepped up for her squad.
“She shot the ball well and had some key outside shots when we needed it. She also did a pretty good job at the line for us,” Baker said.
She said it was those key free throws late in the game that helped her squad win the game.
“And free throws have been our thorn all year long, so I was glad to see that,” she said.
Afterwards, the boys took the court, and the Wildcats hit the ground running, building up a 13-point lead by halftime. Tigers coach Pete Woodard claimed his team was complacent in the first half.
“At halftime, we made a defensive adjustment. The press that we were running wasn’t working so we changed that and gave them a different look … They didn’t adjust to the new defensive scheme we came out with, and we slowly chipped away at their lead,” Woodard said. “Once we took the lead, the guys regained their confidence, their killer instinct kicked in and we took it from there.”
Tigers Dazjon Tinae and Miguel Pineda paced the boys with 31 and 24 points, respectively.
The Tigers now are 10-8 overall and 8-4 in the region, holding the No. 3 spot for now. Tonight, they play at Jenkins, and Saturday, they travel to Groves for pivotal region games.
“Right now, it looks as though Johnson and Savannah are going to lock up one and two … Groves and Jenkins are hot on our trail so tonight’s game will tell whether we lock up that No. 3 seed,” Woodard said. “The remaining games are all region games so we are not trying to look ahead to anyone. We are trying to take them one game at a time.”