Kingston, TN –
By Justin Braden
The Midway Lady Wave are 1A-District 4 champions, but their 49-43 win over the Oakdale Lady Eagles on Tuesday night became a game of double-overtime survival that no one saw coming heading into the 4th quarter.
Oakdale (14-11, 6-4 in 1A-District 4) won the tip-off, but it would be Midway (19-7, 9-1 in 1A-District 4) scoring first after junior Abbie Parks laid it in after she grabbed a pass from sophomore guard Kyleigh Cawood.
Midway senior Kali Kile got the rebound off the ensuing Oakdale position, but the Lady Eagles sat back on defense into a 2-3 zone, a defensive investment that would not pay a dividend until the fourth quarter.
With the first quarter coming to a close, Cawood stole the ball, took advantage of the absence of defenders in the lane, and drove to the basket, drawing a foul, where she hit the back end of her two foul shots, but on the other end, before the quarter expired, Oakdale freshman Coryna Soberal got a rebound and the putback to tie the game 8-8.
The Lady Wave dropped back into their 1-2-2 defense, but Lady Eagles junior guard Jayla Show got open for a three-pointer to give Oakdale their first lead of the game, but then on the other end, junior Addie Armes, fresh into the game from the bench, drained a three-pointer to tie it at 11 all.
Armes's shot was a match in the gas tank of the Midway offense, as she sparked an 11-0 run that had another three-pointer, this time from Kile in the corner, and a putback from freshman Tatum Collier, but Oakdale junior point guard Rhylan Hicks kept her team in the game and sunk a three-pointer right before time expired in the second quarter to cut the deficit heading into halftime at 19-14.
The Lady Wave opened the third quarter on a 10-0 run, with Parks hitting a three on their first possession, before moving their defense into a full-court trap, that forced Hicks into the backcourt for a turnover, and by the end of the quarter, the Lady Wave were up 34-20, with the championship, seemingly only 8 minutes away.
The Lady Wave’s high-speed defense had run themselves out of gas, and Oakdale, still set back in its 2-3 defense, had the size to stop any drives into the lane, and the stamina left to contest shots around the arc.
The Lady Eagles stole the ball on four consecutive possessions, with Oakdale senior Chloe Hamby laying it in herself on the first steal, and then finding Hicks for three on the second, cutting the Midway lead to 7 with 5:53 remaining.
With under a minute left in the fourth quarter, Oakdale had cut the Midway lead to 4, and then sophomore Rilee Goodson found Hicks inside to cut the lead to 2 with only 29 seconds left on the clock.
Cawood was fouled and sent to the line with 12 seconds left, but she missed both shots, and Hamby got the rebound and kicked it over to Hicks, who was immediately trapped by Midway’s defense with the whole court in front of her.
But, Hicks found Lady Eagles junior Jacey Bingham in transition, who brought the ball across mid-court and passed the ball back over to Hicks at the top of the three-point line, who drove hard to the right, spun back inside, and hit the game-tying shot as time expired in regulation.
“In the fourth quarter, we didn’t score a point. We had too many turnovers, and we didn’t do what we were supposed to be doing,” said Midway head coach Mike Hayes.
Oakdale continued an 18-0 run into overtime, after holding Midway scoreless in the fourth, and Hicks struck first in overtime to give the Lady Eagles their first lead since the opening minutes of the first quarter.
Cawood, the 1A-District 4 tournament’s MVP, stole the ball with 1:41 left in overtime, drew a foul as she was driving the lane, and hit both free throws to tie the game 36-36.
Parks hit a free throw to give Midway the lead by 1, but then Hicks drove the lane and again spun left into the defense, and hit a shot, this time underneath the goal to retake the lead by 1 for Oakdale with 1:01 remaining, but on the other end, Armes came through again with a jumper to retake the lead for the Lady Wave.
Cawood was inbounding the ball with 35 seconds left, but Oakdale used two players to force a turnover on her inbound, and Goodson got ahead of the Midway defense to lay it in and give the Lady Eagles a 40-39 lead.
Midway turned the ball over on the ensuing possession, but Parks and Cawood trapped Hicks again. Parks stole the ball and ditched it to Cawood to retake the lead for the Lady Wave with 13 seconds remaining, but Hamby drove on the other end and drew a foul with 4 seconds left.
Hamby hit the first shot to tie the game but missed the second. Midway junior Cloa Copeland hauled in the rebound and passed it to Parks, but she had a full court in front of her, could not get the shot off in time, and the game went to its second overtime.
In the second overtime, Cawood drove into the zone defense and ditched it out to a wide-open Kile, who drained a three from the corner, then Armes got to the line with under 2 minutes left and hit both free throws to extend the Lady Wave’s lead to 5.
Hamby stole the ball before Oakdale and Hicks found Goodson in transition to cut the lead to 3 with 37 seconds left. Copeland missed a shot for Midway, but Armes grabbed the rebound, and the putback, drew a foul to finish a three-point play, and finally put the game away for the Lady Wave 49-43.
“We’re resilient, we’ve been there all year. They fought their way back and did what they had to do at the end,” coach Hayes said. “You got to give Oakdale credit they played hard, they were smart, and hit some big shots.”
Both teams have qualified for the state tournament, and on Friday night, Midway will host Wartburg in the first round of the regional tournament at 7 pm at Midway Middle School. Oakdale hosts Coalfield at Fred Snow Gymnasium at 7 pm on Friday also.
MVP of the game – Addie Armes. 7 of her 13 points came in overtime. She was consistently there for the Lady Wave every time she needed to be, with a three-pointer in the second quarter to tie the game back up, a shot in the first overtime to retake the lead, and finally a putback shot and free throw in the second overtime that locked the game up for Midway.
Oakdale 8 6 6 14 7 2 - 43
Midway 8 11 15 0 7 8 - 49
Rylan Hicks 20, Rilee Goodson 12, Chloe Hamby 6, Jayla Show 3
Kyleigh Cawood 16, Addie Armes 13, Kali Kile 11, Abbie Parks 5
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