Forrest pulls off comeback win at Lewisburg
The Marshall County Tigerettes held Forrest to eight first half points, but could not put the Lady Rockets away and it cost them in a tough 34-30 loss.
“They never quit, they kept believing and kept plugging away,” Forrest coach Jeremy Jean said. “Before the game I told them, it’s gonna be packed and it shouldn’t have bothered us, but it did early.”
Marshall County’s Kelsey Keiler, who led all scorers in the contest with 16 points, kicked off the game with a drive to the hoop and two Claire Woods’ free throws made it 4-0.
Forrest tied the game on a Grace Thrasher bucket in the low post and a driving layup by Ally Blanton, but the visitors did not score again in the first period as the Tigerettes tightened up the defensive pressure cooker.
The Tigerettes took a 9-4 lead to the second quarter and extended it to 17-4 via an 8-0 run started and capped off on two Leah Hollingsworth 3-pointers.
“I think Jaide did a really good job of guarding Leah,” Jean said. “We let her get loose twice in the zone in the second quarter and she made two three’s, so we went back to man-to-man and Jaide did a really good job on her.”
Forrest kept it close as Katey Harmon and Carissa Curtis scored on back-to-back possessions at the end of the first half with MCHS in front 17-8.
Woods nailed a jumper to start the second half before Forrest went on a 7-0 run, capped off by a Carissa Curtis bucket to make it a 19-15 contest.
Keiler and Thrasher knocked down 3-pointers at the end of the third quarter as the Tigerettes took a 22-18 lead to the fourth period.
Two Jaide Langley baskets sandwiched around a Keiler 3-pointer made it 25-22 when Madison Curtis drained a 3-pointer for Forrest, tying the game at 25 with 4:45 remaining in the contest.
Laura Mealer, still seeing limited minutes from her return from injury, put the Lady Rockets in front with a rebound and put-back at the 4:11 mark before both squads went cold.
“I told her (Mealer) don’t worry about scoring, just rebound and play defense,” Jean said. “But when she wants to go to the rim it is hard to stop her. If we can get her back to full speed by tournament time, we will be a different team.”
The only points tallied over the next two minutes was one free throw by Keiler and two by Woods as the Tigerettes held on with a 28-27 lead.
Langley tied the game again with one charity shot, but Keiler responded with a basket to make it a 30-28 contest.
Curtis came up with the play of the game when she nailed a 3-pointer to give Forrest the lead for good with 48 seconds left in the game.
After an MCHS missed shot, Forrest could not put the game away as they missed the front end of a one-and-one.
The Tigerettes had the ball, but an offensive foul call gave the ball back to the Lady Rockets and this time Carissa Curtis nailed both ends of a one-and-one to secure the win for Forrest.
Carissa Curtis was the only Forrest player in double figures in the scoring column with 11 points.
“The game was definitely nerve wracking, but it was also one of the funnest games we had I think,” Carissa Curtis said. “We just kept pushing and had confidence in our shots even though they weren’t falling in the first half.”
“Coach told us at the half that we just have to keep our confidence up and work as a team. He told us to take a deep breath and just play.”
Forrest finished the four-game road trip with a 3-1 record and beat Perry County 43-34 Saturday night to move to 16-7 on the season.
Forrest 4 4 10 16-34
Marshall County 9 8 5 8-30
Forrest (34): Carissa Curtis 11, Ally Blanton 6, Jaide Langley 5, Grace Thrasher 5, Madison Curtis 3, Katey Harmon 2, Laura Mealer 2.
Free Throws (5-for-11): Carissa Curtis 2-for-2, Blanton 2-for-4, Langley 1-for-3, Harmon 0-for-2.
3-Pointers (3): Thrasher, Carissa Curtis, Madison Curtis.
Marshall County (30): Kelsey Keiler 16, Leah Hollingsworth 6, Claire Woods 4, Alli Hobbs 2, Demariae Ingram 2.
Free Throws (8-for-10): Keiler 4-for-6, Hobbs 2-for-2, Woods 2-for-2.
3-Point Goals (4): Keiler 2, Hollingsworth 2.
Halftime Score: Marshall County 17, Forrest 8.