Shelbyville (TN) Central scored a 41-37 victory over Orangeburg (SC)-Wilkinson in the opening round of the 2014 CresCom Bank Holiday Invitational to hand the Bruins their first loss of the season.
Shelbyville Central (7-5) never trailed in teh second half but could not pull away from Orangeburg-Wilkinson (9-1). With the game tied at 16-16 with 1:22 remaining in the first half, Sarah Beth Martin gave the Eaglettes the lead for good with a 3-point basket with 48 seconds remaining. Brandi Rivers connected on a pair of free throws shortly before halftime to close the gap for Orangeburg-Wilkinson to 19-18 at halftime.
In the second half, Shelbyville Central built its largest lead of the game of eight points at 31-23 on an old-fashioned three-point play by Kyleigh Hardy with 8:05 to play. Erin Houser connected on a long 3-pointer and then hit a running jumper in the lane to pull Orangeburg-Wilkinson to within three at 31-28 with 5:47 to play.
Shelbyville’s Romney Felts stopped the run with a pair of free throws before the Bruins connected on four straight free throws — two each by Tchenavia Jackson and Houser — to pull Orangeburg-Wilkinson to within just one point at 33-32 with 3:56 to play. The teams traded baskets and Orangeburg-Wilkinson’s Jade Williams connected on a lay-up after a steal with 39 seconds on the clock to again pull the Bruins to within a single point at 38-37. After trading turnovers, Felts hit 1-of-2 free throws to give Shelbyville a 39-37 lead.
Dejoria Howard missed a jumper with 10 seconds remaining for the Bruins and To’Nesha Allison sealed the victory for Shelbyville Central with a pair of free throws with just six seconds remaining. The Eaglettes connected on 6-of-8 from the free throw line in the final two minutes to hold off Orangeburg-Wilkinson.
Felts led a balanced Shelbyville Central attack with 12 points while Allison added 11 points and six steals. Orangeburg-Wilkinson was paced by Tchenavia Jackson’s 10 points. Georgia Tech signee Dejoria Howard struggled from the field as she connected on just 4-of-11 shots for a season-low eight points.