LYNCHBURG – The Moore County Raiderettes took one big step forward last week — but yet an even bigger step backwards.
After knocking off Forrest 54-51 at home on Tuesday — the Raiderettes’ second win over the Lady Rockets this season — Moore County stubbed its toe Friday night at Eagleville, falling 57-55 to an Eagles squad that had won just one district game this season.
The loss dropped MCHS into a fourth-place tie with Forrest in the District 9-A standings as both had 4-6 league records heading into Tuesday’s games. By virtue of their two wins over Forrest this season, the Raiderettes owned the tiebreaker and for the time being held the fourth spot.
The Raiderettes (15-9, 4-6) were to play Middle Tennessee Christian on Tuesday night and have a rematch with Eagleville at home on Feb. 3. Forrest meanwhile, had only Fayetteville City and Huntland remaining on its district slate.
Moore County has lost three of its last four and five of its last eight games going back to the championship game of the Marlin Christmas Classic.
Unless Huntland or MTCS stumble down the stretch — they still have to play each other one more time — it’s very likely that Moore County and Forrest could be on a collision course for a first round matchup in the upcoming District 9-A tournament, which is set to begin on Feb. 9 at Eagleville.
Eagleville 57, Moore County 55
The Raiderettes dug themselves into a huge hole early and trailed by as many as 21 points in the second half, mainly because they were not able to identify Eagleville’s three-point shooters early in the contest.
The hosts made six treys in the first half, including three by Taylor Turnage. But Moore County did a better job in the second half and didn’t allow a make beyond the arc.
Behind solid pressure defense, and aided by eight missed free throws by the Eagles, Moore County rallied in the fourth period. The Raiderettes had a couple of chances to tie with less than a minute to play. A miscue on an inbounds play by MCHS cost valuable time and gave the ball back to Eagleville.
Still, after another missed free throw, Moore County had one last chance. With 5.6 seconds remaining, Kursten Hawkins drove the length of the court, drew contact and put up a running three-footer at the buzzer that rolled off the rim as time expired.
Hawkins finished with 30 points, while Katie Thomas added 15. Kinsley Logan (5), Makala Ray (3) and Taylor LaCook (2) completes the scoring for MCHS.
Moore County 54, Forrest 51
Katie Thomas hit five three-pointers en route to a 17-point night to lead MCHS past Forrest for the second time this season. Kursten Hawkins added 13 and Kinsley Logan netted 12 in the win. Makayla Ray and Chrissie Lockhart finished with five each and Taylor LaCook scored two.
The game was nip and tuck throughout with the visitors leading 25-24 at intermission. A pair of threes by Logan and one by Thomas helped MCHS surge ahead 42-40 at the end of the third.
The outcome was still in doubt until Logan stepped to the free throw line and made one shot to extend the lead to three points with less than two seconds remaining.