The discernable gap between the Greater Spokane League girls basketball 4A and 3A teams at the start of the season has tightened.
The Shadle Park Highlanders and North Central Indians, co-leaders of the 3A pack, knocked off a pair of 4A teams Thursday as the next-to-last week of league play concluded.
The Highlanders scored their second decision over visiting Mead, eking out a 50-47 decision. For the second straight year, the Indians upset Lewis and Clark, 48-45 in overtime.
Shadle Park and NC, both 12-6 overall and 11-5 in league, continue to jockey for the top seed to the District 8 tournament.
A basket by Kaycee Hert with 26 seconds left followed by a free throw by Chelsea Chandler with 2 seconds to go provided the difference for Shadle.
Hert came up especially big considering the Highlanders had to fight through some foul trouble. She finished with 12 points, seven rebounds and two assists.
Usual leading scorer Aleisha Hathaway was the Highlander most plagued by foul trouble. She missed the final 2:21 of the first quarter and 2:30 of the second. Then 25 seconds into the third, she picked up a third foul and coach Chad Dezellem elected to sit her the rest of the quarter so he could get some key minutes from her in the fourth. She had just six points, eight below her average.
“They found a way to get it done,” Dezellem said. “They executed some set plays at the end. We weathered a storm with some pretty good starters on the bench in that third quarter. Our subs did a great, great job.”
Shadle took advantage of nine Mead turnovers in the second quarter to take a 24-17 lead into halftime.
A basket by Rekiyah Carney and a 3-pointer Paige Reidt gave the Highlanders their biggest lead at 29-19 at the 6:43 mark of the third.
Mead promptly took advantage of seven Shadle turnovers for an 11-2 run that allowed the Panthers to draw even at 31 with 3:07 to go in the third.
A putback shot at the buzzer by Carney gave the Highlanders a 38-34 lead going into the fourth.
Mead tied the score three times in the final quarter. The Panthers took their last lead at 47-45 when Jade Redmon completed a three-point play with 2:08 to go.
“The first half we didn’t bring any energy,” Mead coach Regan Drew said. “We were making mental mistakes and having some breakdowns that you just can’t do against a good team. They got some good looks inside and finished.”
Chandler scored 11 of her 13 points in the second half, including a key 3-pointer in the fourth. Kendra Knutsen added 10 to go with four rebounds and three assists.
Redmon led Mead with 12 points and Ingebritsen had 11 to go with six rebounds.
North Central 48, Lewis and Clark 45 (OT): The Indians’ Riley Holsinger hit a 3-pointer with 4 seconds remaining to send the game to overtime at NC.
All nine points, including six by NC, came from the free-throw line. Tara Van Weerdhuizen made 4 of 4 foul shots to secure the win.
LC (13-5, 12-4) jumped out to a 26-16 lead by halftime, but couldn’t make the advantage stand. The Tigers committed 20 turnovers.
Holsinger led NC with 17 points, nine rebounds, eight steals and four assists. Van Weerdhuizen had 12 points, eight rebounds and four blocked shots. Devyn Galland led LC with 18 points.
Gonzaga Prep 87, Mt. Spokane 47: The Bullpups (15-3, 14-2) clinched no worse than a share of the league title over the visiting Wildcats (7-11, 5-11).
G-Prep’s Tia Presley had 23 points to move within 11 points of GSL all-time scoring leader Angie Bjorklund of University (1,314) with two games remaining. The Bullpups’ Lindsay Stockton had 20 points, six assists and four rebounds. Kennadie Clute led Mt. Spokane with 15 points.
Central Valley 58, University 44: The Bears (10-8, 9-7) took control in the second quarter, outscoring the Titans (6-12, 5-11) 12-2 in the Stinky Sneaker game at the Arena.
Freshman Mariah Cunningham led CV with 15 points, making 7 of 9 shots from the floor and grabbing eight rebounds. Amy Thorton led U-Hi with 11 points and seven rebounds.
Ferris 82, Rogers 25: The Saxons (5-12, 4-12) soared on Senior Night, zipping to a 46-14 lead by halftime over the Pirates (1-17, 0-16).
Three seniors reached double-figure scoring for the Saxons. Katara Belton-Sharp led with 17, Joz Hicks had 16 and Cassie Wendt chipped in 12. Hicks also had seven rebounds.
Brooklyn Smith had 12 points and Jasmin Andrews nine rebounds to lead Rogers.