Buzzer beaten

Although he was not happy about the outcome of his Lady Spartans’ home game Tuesday night with Knob Noster, Richmond Coach David Littrell was proud of how they battled in a 44-41 MRVC East loss.
The Lady Spartans pushed Knob Noster to the limit, and the visitors had no time to relax until Sarah Tyler’s 3-point bucket from the corner swished through the net at the final buzzer.
The Knob Noster victory gives the Lady Panthers a 4-1 mark in the conference race, with their lone setback coming to first-place Holden.
Littrell said his Lady Spartans, now 0-5 in the league and 3-13 overall, stepped up their level of play.
“We challenged the girls to step up to a higher level of play in practice and every player on this team did just that,” he said. “We took a huge step forward as a team tonight, the girls did a great job against a very tough basketball team.”
Knob Noster outscored Richmond 13-8 in the final period as the Lady Panthers spent the entire night battling from behind. The Lady Spartans jumped to an 8-2 lead in the first quarter and held an 11-9 advantage heading into the second period.
Richmond held its lead throughout the second frame, but Knob Noster took advantage of a couple of late turnovers to tie the game 20-20 at the half.
The Lady Spartans built a 5-point lead early in the third quarter, and held off the visitors to take a 33-31 lead into the final 8 minutes.
Ironically, Tyler opened the fourth period with a 3-point bucket to give Knob Noster its first lead of the game.
Both teams exchanged scores throughout the fourth quarter. Richmond had a few opportunities to regain the lead, but hit just 2 of 6 free throw attempts in the final 1:23.
However, it was a pair of free throws from Kayla Hewitt that allowed Richmond to tie the game 41-41 with 48 seconds remaining before Tyler’s 3-ball ended the game.
Littrell said his team played with a lot of poise on both ends of the court.
“We did the things we needed to do to keep us in the game,” he said. “Any time they made a run on us, we settled down and got back into our game plan. We handled their pressure defense very well and did a great job of executing our offensive sets.”
Kyra Williams led the Knob Noster scoring with 16 points, with Christina Jones adding 14, and Tyler hit for 10.
Hewitt hit 5 of her 6 free throws for the game and led the Lady Spartan scoring with 13 points, while Chelsea Hook had a good night inside by adding a dozen points.
Baylyn Jennings hit for 8, followed by Stephanie Williams with 4, and Hannah Alpers and Whitney Martens with 2 each.
The Lady Spartans converted 5 of 16 attempts from the stripe, while Knob Noster made 5 of 9 free throws.
PHOTO: Richmond’s Chelsea Hook finds her way inside for a Lady Spartan bucket during Monday night’s 44-41 loss to Knob Noster. (Photo by Russ Green/The Daily News.)

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