Waterford Wins Thriller over Eastern

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With the game tied 33-33 and the fourth quarter running out of ticks, three Eastern Lady Eagles battled a Waterford player for the ball under the Lady Wildcat basket.  Waterford coach Jerry Close screamed at his players, “Get on the ground.  They have three players on the ground and we have one.  That’s heart.”

Eastern and Waterford had heart during Waterford’s 37-33 victory over the Lady Eagles, but Eastern held the advantage at that moment and for most of the second half.

After Eastern tied the game with 46.8 seconds remaining, Waterford took back the lead just 13 seconds later with two Megan Ball free throws.  Waterford’s heart was back and the Lady Wildcats didn’t let the game slip away again.

Eastern tried to advance the inbound over midfield by Waterford was smothering and Alli Kern made the steal and pass to Hayley Duff for the basket.  Another steal sealed the victory and a supreme advantage for the TVC-Hocking crown.

Waterford jumped out to a quick 8-0 lead before Eastern drained a three to finally get on the board.  The Lady Wildcats finished up the first quarter ahead 15-3, but slowed down until those final seconds.

Halftime saw Waterford ahead by five, but Eastern quickly tied the game within two minutes of the second half beginning.

Only four Lady Wildcats put up points and Ball and Kern accounted for 30 of the team’s 37 points.  No player on Eastern scored more than eight points including Laura Pullins who only had six.

Kern added 12 rebounds, six steals and a block to her 16 points.  Ball’s 14 points were helped by six rebounds.  Coach Close said for Waterford to continue to win games, the entire team needs to play tougher and Kern and Ball can’t be the only contributors.

The win greatly improves the chances for Waterford (15-2, 13-0) to clinch the TVC-Hocking.  The Lady Wildcats can move one step closer against Southern on Thursday.

Eastern (16-3, 12-2) has just two games remaining and faces Belpre on Thursday.