St. Clair and North County needed four overtimes to decide their girls basketball contest Thursday night.
When the smoke cleared, the Lady Bulldogs emerged with a 64-62 victory at North County High School.
“It was a long night, but a great team win,” said St. Clair Head Coach Jena Carroll. “I was proud to see us fight the way we did and earn the win.”
The game was tied 49-49 at the end of regulation and also following the first overtime.
The score moved to 54-54 after the second overtime and 60-60 following the third overtime.
Finally, the Lady Bulldogs (4-5) held the advantage in the fourth overtime to win the marathon game.
Karissa Hoffman broke a 62-62 tie by making two free throws with 1.2 seconds remaining on the clock for the win. She went to the free-throw line after being fouled on a rebound.
The four overtime sessions equaled a normal full half of basketball covering 16 minutes.
“I was happy with the girls’ ability to listen to what we needed to do and adjust on the fly,” Carroll said. “Everybody got in the game and was able to make a difference.”
Hoffman led a balanced St. Clair attack, finishing the game with 16 points and 10 rebounds. She was 6-6 from the foul line.
Sam Deason finished the game with 15 points.
“Deason had a big third quarter, scoring eight of our 10 points,” Carroll said.
Allison Hinson collected 13 points, five steals and four assists.
“Hinson played tough all night,” Carroll said. “She did a good job of getting inside and getting to the free-throw line.”
Alicia York finished with eight points. She hit a jump shot from the elbow in transition to send the game to the third overtime session.
“I was pleased with York’s confidence to move the ball in transition and hit a mid-range jumper to send the game to the third overtime,” Carroll said.
Katelyn Guehne added six points, three blocks and two steals.
“Guehne played really hard,” Carroll said.
Emily Presley added two points, five steals and four assists.
“Presley played really solid and focused,” Carroll said. “She applied great pressure on the defensive end.”
Halley Cokley and Miranda Murphy both scored two points.
Trailing 19-11 after one quarter, St. Clair came back to outscore North County 15-6 in the second quarter to take a 26-25 advantage at halftime.
North County led 38-36 after three quarters.
“We came out a little sloppy. It took us some time to get keyed in to what adjustments we needed to make,” Carroll said. “Being down by eight points after the first quarter, it would have been real easy to roll over and give up. We made a few key adjustments to our press rotation and we came up with several steals that we were able to finish. The difference in us getting back in the game was our defense in the second quarter, holding them to six points.”
While many area teams haven’t seen game action during the holidays, it’s been a busy time for the Lady Bulldogs, who claimed third-place honors last week at the U.S. Bank Rolla Holiday Tournament.
The victory at North County capped a run of four games in an eight-day span, where St. Clair posted a 3-1 record.
After starting the season with an 0-3 record, the Lady Bulldogs now have won four of their last six games.
St. Clair’s junior varsity team was a 30-point winner over North County.
St. Clair hosts Potosi Monday in a girls and boys doubleheader with JV action starting at 4 p.m. The Lady Bulldogs visit Borgia Wednesday at 5 p.m.