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SHEPHERDSVILLE - It took an overtime to do it, but the Bullitt Central Lady Cougars finally picked up the one win they had to have in December as they slipped past visiting Southern 64-56 on Tuesday.
The Lady Trojans are a vastly improved team over the past few seasons and they also much more athletic. They gave Bullitt Central fits at times on Tuesday and actually had a chance to win at the end of regulation time only to have a lane violation erase a made free throw with :12.3 to play.
Given new life, Bullitt Central made the most of it, scoring seven straight points midway through the four-minute overtime to snap a four-game losing streak and win for the second time this season.
The game had added importance this season as the teams in the 24th District will count just one meeting in the seeding process for the post-season tournament which will be played at Southern. While the Bullitt County schools will continue playing each other twice, this was the only meeting of the regular season between Bullitt Central and Southern.
“A win is a win,” Bullitt Central head coach Bryan Bates said with a smile after the game. “When you are 1-3, any win is a good win.”
Bullitt Central led 40-35 entering the fourth quarter after trailing by six points at halftime. The Lady Cougars were still on top 51-47 when Bates used his last time-out with 2:10 left in regulation.
Southern got closer on a basket by Shavonna Jackson and after a time-out of their own, the Lady Trojans tied the score at 51-51 when Jackson scored with 42 seconds remaining. After Southern knocked the ball out of bounds at :25.3, Bullitt Central got two good shots, but neither fell and on the rebound, Alexis Dickerson was fouled. She missed the first one, but the second one rolled in only to be erased by a lane violation call.
Southern scored first in the overtime and they were still up 54-52 before Bullitt Central junior Janie Baumgardner converted a three-point play. That started a seven-point surge for the maroon and gray as they quickly added two free throws from freshman Selena Yunt and a basket by sophomore Kaitlyn McKnight to go up 59-54.
The visitors did get a basket by Dickerson, but Bullitt Central scored the last five points of the game to secure the win.
Bullitt Central got big games from Baumgardner and Yunt to help pull out the victory. Baumgardner scored 11 of her team-high 19 points in the second half including a three-pointer to start the third quarter that jump-started the team to 20 points in frame.
Yunt got her most extensive action of the season as she ran the team when junior point guard Keoka Hilliard fouled out with 5:06 remaining in the fourth quarter. Yunt finished with 16 points.
“From the second quarter on I thought Janie had a good game,” Bates said. “She made some big shots for us and drove it to the basket.
“I thought Selena Yunt was just remarkable for a freshman,” the coach added.
Bullitt Central’s roster got shorter as the game went on. First, junior Danielle Biven did not dress for the game because of a knee injury. In the second half, sophomore starter Seaera Minyard suffered a cut inside her mouth and left to get stitches. Then Hilliard fouled out with a lot of time still to play.
Senior Logan Wood stepped in and scored ten points.
Southern was led by Jackson with 23 points while Keona Daniel collected 14 points.
Bullitt Central will play this week in the Doss Invitational. The Lady Cougars will start play at 2:30 p.m. on Monday against Atherton.
At Bullitt Central
SOUTHERN 56 (12-14-9-16-5) Starkey 6, Daniel 14, Dickerson 8, Burns 3, Jackson 23, Armstrong 2.
BULLITT CENTRAL 64 (9-11-20-11-13) Logan Wood 10, Keoka Hilliard 5, Janie Baumgardner 19, Valerie Terry 7, Rachel Farber 2, Kaitlyn McKnight 5, Selena Yunt 16.