BROOKLAND Accurate shooting from the free throw line wasn't exactly perfect here last Thursday night for the Buffalo Island Central Lady Mustangs, however, the shots made from the charity stripe by the BIC girls down the stretch proved to be the game's difference as the Lady Mustangs held off a second half charge by the Brookland Lady Bearcats to post their fourth win of the year, 50-43.
In addition to canning six of eight free throws in the waning minutes of Thursday night's showdown, the Lady Mustangs found numerous ways to thwart off the potent Bearcat offensive threat.
"Our free throw shooting percentage tonight was nothing to be proud of," said BIC head coach Mike Kinard after the game, "but," he added, "it turned out that hitting 10 was what we needed to win."
For the night, the Lady Mustangs connected on 10 of 22 free throw attempts.
"We kept our composure," coach Kinard added. "That's what was the key to our win tonight. "They (Brookland) hit some amazing shots tonight. They hung right with us the entire night. We were just able to hold our composure and hit some key free throws when it mattered."
The Lady Mustangs came out firing with Leslie Cobb and Holly Cagle each connecting from three-point land two more buckets by the duo gave Buffalo Island a 12-8 four-point lead at the end of the first period.
The second period saw the Lady Bearcats regroup and pull to within two points, 14-12, on two free throws by Sara McKay. A drive in the lane by Tara Roach and two consecutive offensive putbacks by Valerie Willyerd paced the Lady Mustangs to a 20-12 lead. A Brookland bucket at the halftime buzzer brought the Lady Bearcats back to trail by two, 24-22, at the intermission.
A cold streak by both teams midway through the third period was snapped by BIC when Sara Walker scored in the paint. At the 4:15 mark of the frame, McKay tossed in an offensive rebound to tie the game at 28-all. Following a Lady Bearcat timeout with 1:52 to play in the quarter, Brookland took their first lead of the game, 35-34, on a bucket by Christy Phillips.
Brookland extended their lead to three, 37-34, to start off the fourth quarter. With 4:41 to play in the contest, BIC took the lead for good, 41-39, and with free throws by Cagle and Walker in addition to a bucket by Tara Roach, the Lady Mustangs pulled away for the win.
Walker led Buffalo Island with 14 points followed by Willyerd with 10. Roach and Cagle each tossed in 9 with Walker contributing 8.
Phillips led Brookland with 20 points. McKay also hit double figures with 12.
Buffalo Island's junior high team cruised to a 43-17 win earlier in the night after a scorching 20-0 start.
Nan Lee Bridges led BIC with 20 points Jessica Shepard added 10. Also scoring for the BIC juniors were Ashley Tate and Kayla Harrison with 4 apiece, Kasey Garrett with 3 and Lauryn Smith with 2.
Sarah Bracken paced Brookland with 7.