After three days of dramatic basketball, the South State Tournament came to a close Saturday evening at Glenbrook School with Claiborne Academy sweeping the boys and girls championships. The Rebels and Lady Rebels will advance to the Overall State Tournament as No. 1 seeds after the Claiborne boys beat Clinton Christian in the finals and the Lady Rebels survived a close game with Trinity Episcopal Day School.
The Lady Apaches finished in fourth place, good enough for the final spot in the State Tournament which begins Monday in Canton, Mississippi.
Here’s a recap of the Lady Apaches’ busy weekend.
Glenbrook vs. Claiborne
After defeating the Franklin Academy Lady Cougars in round one, Glenbrook took on Claiborne for a spot in the finals Friday night. The Lady Apaches fought hard, coming back from an 11-point deficit to take a fourth-quarter lead, but Claiborne knocked down a timely 3-pointer with 25 seconds to go and Glenbrook’s last-gasp effort to tie the game fell short.
When the final horn sounded, the score was 33-31, Lady Rebels.
“Defensively, we played extremely well,” Lady Apache head coach Rendi Dillard said. “Our lack of offense was crippling for us. We came out to play in the third quarter and got back in it, but it wasn’t enough.”
Glenbrook was ice-cold the entire first half and trailed at the break 20-10. Late in the third quarter, the Lady Apaches came to life, going on a 14-2 run to take a 25-24 lead.
With Glenbrook leading 31-30, Claiborne’s Kylie Bass came down and knocked in a clutch 3-pointer to give the Lady Rebels a two-point lead with 25 ticks left on the clock. Glenbrook called timeout to setup a play to tie or win, but Megan Sims’ desparation 3-pointer was off the mark.
Glenbrook had one more possession after Claiborne missed the front end of a one-and-one. Kara Bryce attempted a half-court heave and was leveled on the play, but no foul was called. It also appeared Dillard was trying to get a timeout on the rebound, but the referees either didn’t hear her or failed to acknowledge the motion, ending the game.
“I was yelling for the timeout,” Dillard said. “I just didn’t get it.”
The game arguably came down to free throws, as Claiborne made the majority of theirs while Glenbrook missed 10 in comparison.
Carsin Spurlock led the way with 16 points, followed by Kate Marvin with six points and Olivia Dalton, Kara Bryce and Megan Sims with three points each.
Glenbrook vs. Tallulah
In the third place game against Tallulah, the Lady Apaches fell to the Lady Trojans, 43-39.
Coming off an emotional rivalry game, many wondered how the Lady Apaches would respond, and they answered those questions early with effort.
Glenbrook trailed 17-12 at the half as scoring issues continued to plague the Lady Apaches, but much like the last game against Claiborne, the girls made a run in the third quarter. The way the third quarter ended would prove costly however. With 30 seconds remaining Glenbrook could have held for the last shot, but took a quick shot instead. Tallulah pulled down the rebound, went the other way and was fouled. The Lady Trojans hit the first free throw but missed the second, Tallulah came down with the rebound and was fouled on a shot that went in, good for an and one. Tallulah knocked down the free throw and the quarter ended on a four-point swing to the Lady Trojans.
Facing a 10-point deficit in the game’s final minute, Glenbrook made things interesting thanks to a pair of deep, 3-pointers by junior Megan Sims, but it was too little too late.
Spurlock led the team with 13 points, while Sims, Dalton and Amelia Christy finished with six points each.
The Lady Apaches must now regroup and try to make a special run at the Overall State Tournament, starting today against Marshall Academy at 6:30 p.m.