Peyton Carter hit two free throws with 1:17 left to play to lift Abingdon to a 57-55 Mountain 7 District girls basketball win over Wise Central Tuesday.
The victory, coupled with Ridgeview’s win over Lee High on Tuesday, created a three-way tie in the loss column for the district lead.
Central (11-4, 5-1) leads Abingdon (9-5, 4-1) and Ridgeview (11-3, 4-1) by a game in the win column.
CLOSE ALL THE WAY
The Lady Warriors and Lady Falcons battled throughout Tuesday, neither team gaining more than an eight-point advantage.
Abingdon led 26-18 with 1:33 left to play in the second quarter before Central used an 8-2 run over the final minute to pull to within two, 28-26, at halftime. Solid play on both ends of the floor kept the margin close throughout the second half.
“I thought we played excellent. I thought we played great down the stretch,” said Abingdon coach Jimmy Brown. “We had some kids step up and make some really big shots for us.
“Any time you beat them, it’s a good win. And to win one here is really special.”
Central coach Robin Dotson said his team suffered from mistakes down the stretch.
“We fouled and then we didn’t box out on free throws. It was just little things that caught up with us in the end,” said Dotson, who added that Abingdon is a team to be worried about as the season moves along.
“I think this Abingdon team is better than last year’s Abingdon team. They play well together. They play hard and they shot the ball extremely well,” he said. “We didn’t see that coming with their post players knocking down all those 3s.”
LOGJAM AT THE TOP
Heading into the second half of Mountain 7 play, both coaches know their teams will have to be prepared each time out.
“It’s easy at this point of the game to get a little complacent. I think we’ll bounce back from this,” Dotson said.
“From here on, it’s just no letdown for us. We want to come out, we want to play hard, we want to execute and we’ll see what happens in the end,” said Brown.
“There’s three at the top (of the district) and in my opinion we all can win it. We all have to play again. I’m just glad both of those games are at Abingdon.”
Carter finished with 15 points to lead Abingdon. Sarah Walters contributed 13 and Emily Breeding finished with 10.
Central got 19 points apiece from Brook Porter and Dee Cvetnich.
CENTRAL BOYS NOTCH ‘W’
Elijah Hayes scored 13 points, Jordan Bishop finished with 11 and Ben Stallard had 10 to lead the Warriors (11-5, 4-2) to the 58-47 victory over the Falcons.
Chase Hungate scored 16 points to lead Abingdon (5-8, 1-4).