Hot Shooting Carries Cayuga Girls Past Overton, 63-54, in Class A Bi-District Playoff
TYLER — There was no denying the shooting prowess of the Cayuga LadyCats.
It was on full display Tuesday night, as the LadyCats built a double-digit second-half lead and overcame a furious comeback attempt by Overton to defeat the Lady Mustangs, 63-54, in their Class A Division I bi-district playoff at Tyler Junior College’s Wagstaff Gymnasium.
Cayuga (19-10) moves on to face Chilton in the area round at Groesbeck on Friday.
Cayuga had the outside stroke, hitting six 3-pointers and finishing strong at the free throw line. The LadyCats built a 14-point lead at the end of the third, and held on down the stretch, thanks to shooting 70 percent from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter.
Overton (21-9) went on a 20-11 run to get within five, 53-48, after Abby Mackey nailed 1 of 2 free throws with 1:08 remaining in the fourth. But Cayuga’s Madyson Gunnels and Molly Griffey hit four free throws in a span of 25 seconds to put it away for the LadyCats. The two teams combined for 47 points in the final period.
“Of course, anytime you get a playoff win it feels good,” said Cayuga coach Tommy Cross. “We showed great character for our girls to hit clutch free-throws in the end. Very proud of the girls, and their effort tonight. We are very guard-oriented, and do a lot of dribble-drive stuff. We basically are looking for layups and three-balls, with a few free throws in between. We shot the ball pretty well overall.”
Cayuga’s Madison Spears had a team-high 18 points, including four 3-pointers. Shawna Knox poured in 12 points, grabbed a game-high 12 rebounds and added four steals and two blocks. Griffey added nine points and five assists, while Kylee Cross and Madyson Gunnels combined for 15 points and nine boards. Junior forward Danielle Anderson tallied nine points — all in the second half.
Cayuga outscored Overton 28-15 during the second and third quarters. The LadyCats staged a pair of 11-4 runs during the span. Spears started the first, when she dished to Cross for the trey to begin the second quarter. She capped it off with a steal and coast-to-coast layup, giving Cayuga the 25-19 halftime lead.
The second run began when Griffey fed Gunnels off the dribble-drive for the triple, and ended with a Griffey lay-in at the 3:00 mark, which gave Cayuga a 36-23 lead.
Overton’s Heather Raney, a sophomore, contributed a game-high 24 points. She had 14 points alone in the first quarter, and 18 of the 19 first-half points for the Lady Mustangs. Raney also had seven rebounds and a couple of blocks. Jiamesia Young tallied eight points and seven boards, while Savannah Bobbit added seven points and five offensive rebounds.
Despite not scoring in the first half, Mackey turned in the stat line of the night with 10 points, seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks. The senior point guard will be attending TJC on a volleyball scholarship next fall.
“I’m really proud of my kids,” said Overton coach Randy Smith. “We played a good game, and Cayuga played a great game. We needed them to miss a few, and they didn’t miss many. We didn’t quit, and that’s one thing I’ve been blessed with — a lot of competitors. We knew that if things could just fall our way a little bit, that we might have a chance. I’m just so proud of their effort.”