The Lady Bulldogs did just enough to clinch a playoff spot on Wednesday night.
Cedartown’s girls basketball squad overcame multiple deficits in their 39-28 victory over Chapel Hill. The Region Tournament victory advances CHS to the Region 5-4A semifinals and assures them a postseason appearance for the second straight season.
Although the Lady Bulldogs scored 50 points versus Chapel Hill on Saturday’s Senior Night game, points were hard to come by in the early stages of Wednesday’s affair. Cedartown managed only one basket versus a stingy Lady Panther defense in the first period and trailed 7-3 going into the second interval.
The second period went more favorable for Coach Eddie Gambrell’s team. Marycille Brumby and Qiana Watson each made big shots in the second, and the Cedartown defense held Chapel Hill to only basket over the course of eight minutes. The two teams headed into the locker rooms tied 9-9.
In the third, each side continued more of the same. Both offenses tried to find open shooters on the outside: for Cedartown, Marycille Brumby made more impressive jumpshots; for Chapel Hill, Nadia Barbary buried two threes.
As the third period drew to a close, the Lady Panthers and Lady Bulldogs were still tied. Qiana Watson jumped a Chapel Hill pass and took it the other way. An open Keke Turner received a pass underneath and laid it up to give Cedartown their first lead of the game.
The basket with four seconds left in the period put CHS up 20-18 and gave them an advantage they would not relinquish.
Turner’s layup gave Cedartown a breath of fresh air on offense. The shot seemingly shot adrenaline in the Lady Bulldogs as they went on a massive scoring run. From the 1:29 mark of the third period until the 5:11 point of the fourth period, Cedartown went on a 13-0 run to go from down 18-15 to up 28-18.
This turn of events allowed CHS to pull away early in the fourth for a rather comfortable victory. Though Chapel Hill tried to come back, Cedartown’s offense was just too good. The Lady Bulldogs outscored Chapel Hill 19-11 in the fourth to earn an eleven-point win.
Cedartown (11-10) was led in scoring by Qiana Watson. The junior scored 15 points overall with 11 of those coming in the final period. Marycille Brumby finished with 8 points and 6 rebounds while Keke Turner added 6 points and 10 rebounds.
Zoe Diamond Pasley scored 4 points and snagged 9 rebounds while Kam Frazier netted 4 points. Junior Roslyn Blankenship made two free throws in the win.
The leading scorer for Chapel Hill (11-15) was sophomore Nadia Barbary. The Mississippi State softball commit scored 12 points- all on three-pointers- in the second half alone.
Savannah Howard tallied 7 points and Diamond Solomon finished with 5 points. Madison Pinkney and Tia Nelson added 2 points each. The Lady Panthers, who are coached by Amber Lee, had their season come to an end in their Region Tournament loss at LaGrange High School.
With the win, Cedartown advances to the Region 5-4A Tournament semifinals. The fourth-seed Lady Bulldogs will meet the first-seed Troup County. The Lady Tigers, who are the no. 5 team in the state for Class 4A according to analyst Kyle Sandy, finished the regular season undefeated at 22-0 (12-0). They swept Cedartown in their two meetings earlier this year.
The girls semifinal game will be played at Sandy Creek High School in Tyrone, Ga., on Friday. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday evening, and the game will be broadcast on WGAA Radio (106.1 FM, AM 1340, WGAARadio.com, and on Facebook Live).