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Down to the wire

There are times when the final score doesn’t tell the whole story, and Thursday night was one of those occasions as the Fort Dale girls fell to Lee-Scott 52-40.

The game was much closer than the score indicates as the Eagles put a scare into the Warriors.

“These girls played really hard and played their hearts out,” said head coach William Johnson.

The last time the teams met, Lee-Scott won by 20 points, but it was clear from the beginning that that wouldn’t be the case this time.

Morgan’s lead at the end of the first quarter would have been 18-12, but Jessie Langford hit a buzzer-beating three-pointer from the right wing to cut it to 18-15.

The lead stayed around three points for much of the second quarter, but Lee-Scott went on a run in the last two minutes of the half to make it 30-21 at the break.

In the third quarter, the Eagles caught fire and scored 14 points while holding Lee-Scott to seven.

Fort Dale finally pulled to a tie at 37 on two free throws by Elizabeth Dunklin early in the fourth quarter, but LSA pulled back out to a slim lead, which they held for the rest of the game.

Johnson said he was pleased with his team’s play, and that there were a few missed opportunities.

“I know we had some missed shots down the stretch, particularly layups,” he said. “We held them on defense, but we just couldn’t convert.”

Defensively, the Eagles kept the Warriors in check, and Johnson said he was glad to have Elizabeth Dunklin back.

“She played great on defense,” he said.

Abbey Martin was the top scorer for the Eagles with 13 points, followed by Murphy Middleton with eight and Langford with seven.

The loss was the Eagles’ second of the week, following a marathon four-overtime loss to Pike Liberal Arts on Tuesday.

Pike had a slim 17-15 lead at halftime, and the game was tied at 27 at the end of regulation.

When the first overtime ended, the game was locked at 34.

Both teams scored five points in the second overtime, and the score was still knotted at 44 after the third overtime.

However, in the fourth overtime, Pike pulled ahead and won 55-45.

“We had some opportunities to win, but we just ran out of gas,” Johnson said.

Pike and Fort Dale are about as evenly matched as two teams can be — the two have played a combined six overtimes in two games this year.

Karli Boulware was the leading scorer with nine points, and Middleton added eight.