Lady Trojans take down Bruton in overtime affair
After nearly three weeks isolated from the hardwood, New Kent’s Lady Trojans returned to the floor on Jan. 11, looking to sweep the invading Bruton Lady Panthers. It took some time, and an extra period, for the hosts to complete the task.
A Haley Hyndshaw lay-up with five seconds remaining in overtime proved to be the difference maker as New Kent emerged with a 53-51 victory in the Thursday night affair.
Madison Foley’s jumper along with a Peyton Slater three-pointer and subsequent elbow basket catapulted New Kent to a 7-2 lead. But as the time in the first quarter ticked away, Bruton’s Makayla Johnson shouldered the visitors’ scoring. After drawing numerous fouls on New Kent, Johnson connected with a long-distance trifecta to give Bruton a 15-13 lead heading into quarter two.
A depleted New Kent roster saw the promotion of Bailee Hellebrandt to the varsity level. Her debut provided an immediate spark, as her three-pointer trimmed Bruton’s advantage to three (24-21) in the second quarter. But Johnson had an answer, connecting a long-distance basket of her own to give the Lady Panthers a 32-25 advantage to end the second quarter.
New Kent barely chipped away from the deficit in the third, but found more success in the fourth. Sloppy play by the visitors allowed the Lady Trojans to cut the lead to a mere point (39-38). However, Johnson’s antics resulted in five straight points for the senior and a 44-38 lead.
But Hyndshaw countered the Bruton run with a 6-0 spurt of her own to tie the game. Bruton reemerged with the lead after an Emily Dhanvada free throw, but Hellebrandt knotted the game at 45 apiece as the buzzer to signal the end of regulation sounded.
In overtime, New Kent held a 51-48 lead with less than 30 seconds remaining before Johnson banked a three-pointer off the glass to tie the game again. New Kent turned the ball over, but Bruton failed to convert an easy lay-in. A bounce off the rim resulted in the ball in Hellebrandt’s hands. A near floor-length toss to Hyndshaw led to what amounted to the game-winning basket.
After the contest, New Kent head coach Neko Burson talked about the play of his team and the skills that need to be carried over from practice.
“We have to learn repetition,” he said. “We have to learn that in practice and that is where it translates.
“The players have to see the bigger picture and tonight we missed too many free throws,” Burson continued, pointing to a dismal 11-31 from the charity stripe. “We had a lot of empty possessions and we threw up junk. Making shots and a strong work ethic will lead to success.”
Hyndshaw’s 19 points led New Kent (4-6) in the scoring column. Foley added 13 while Hellebrandt dropped 10 in her varsity debut. Slater finished nine while Brynne Jones chipped in with two.
Bruton’s Johnson led all scorers in the game with 22 points.