Sports

Scott Co. girls advance on last-second shot

BOWLING GREEN — Kristen Stainback could tell you that she knew the shot was going in as soon as it left her hands, but the junior would be lying.

"I was hoping" it would go in, she said. "I was hoping."

When the Scott County guard released the shot — from much closer to her bench than the three-point line at Diddle Arena — she held her breath.

"I was just waiting, waiting," she said. "It seemed like forever before the ball went in."

But it did go in and the Cardinals topped Boone County 67-66 in overtime in the quarterfinals of the Houchens Industries/KHSAA Girls Sweet Sixteen.

The shot, which sent Scott County to Saturday morning's semifinals for the first time since 1995, was part of a 28-point performance for Stainback, who scored all seven of the Cards' points in overtime.

Scott County trailed 66-64 with 28 seconds to play after Sydney Moss made a bucket and free throw to complete a three-point play.

Senior guard Madisen Webb drove down the court and handed the ball off to Stainback, who launched it with four seconds left.

"They made a great shot to win it," Boone County Coach Nell Fookes said.

The coach said guard Cortney Sellers, who had a big three-pointer of her own in overtime, felt terrible about Stainback's make from nearly 30 feet out. But Fookes didn't blame Sellers.

"She felt like the girl got a great shot," Fookes said. "But I think when she looks back on the film, she'll see it's a tough, tough shot."

Stainback said she didn't have time to ponder what what shot to take. She just knew that her team was down and she had the ball.

"When it got down to that situation, I wasn't thinking," said Stainback, who also had eight rebounds and two steals. "I just did what came naturally."

It was just her second three-pointer Friday night. Against Belfry the day before, she went 0-for-3.

But it didn't deter Stainback.

"As a shooter you can't think about your last 10 misses," she said. "I wasn't thinking about that at all."

Scott County, brushing off a lackluster win over Belfry in the first round, stormed out of the locker room to grab a 24-15 lead in the first quarter.

The game went back and forth all night, with 12 lead changes.

The Rebels looked done at the end of regulation. Stainback had hit two free throws with 29 seconds left to grab a 60-57 lead.

But Sydney Moss, daughter of NFL star Randy Moss, wasn't done with her Sweet Sixteen show. She hit a three-pointer —just her sixth of the season — in the final seconds to force the extra period. Moss finished with 26 points and 12 rebounds.

"A couple of times, she wasn't going to be denied," Scott Coach Steve Helton said of Moss. "She had 26 (points) and 12 (rebounds) and I thought we did a good job on her. She's that good of a player."

Point guard Heather Sandlin added 13 points and 10 assists for the Rebels, who finished the season 28-4.

"I wish I could take all of the pain of the team on myself," Fookes said afterward. "It's part of basketball. That's what this is all a part of."

Stainback wasn't Scott County's only star. Alex McKenzie, charged with guarding Moss most of the game, had 19 points and six rebounds.

Webb added 13 points, eight rebounds, seven assists and three steals.

"This is amazing," she said of the win, the 16th in a row for the Cardinals. "We've known all year that we could get here and that no one expected us to all year."

Related stories from Lexington Herald Leader

  Comments