Tuesday, March 10, 2015

SPORTS STORY >> Har-Ber shocks Cabot at state

Leader sportswriter

The Cabot girls’ Class 7A state tournament run ended sooner than expected Friday at Springdale Har-Ber High School, as the tournament hosts upset the Lady Panthers in the opening round, beating them by the final score of 56-41.

Cabot struggled with its shooting throughout the game, and trailed 13-8 at the end of the first quarter. The Lady Panthers (23-6) outscored the Lady Wildcats (20-10) by two in the second quarter, which cut Har-Ber’s lead to three by halftime, with the score 25-22.

The Lady Panthers got within 34-32 of the hosts’ lead near the end of the third quarter, but Har- Ber ended the third quarter with a 3-pointer, which upped the Lady Wildcats’ lead to 37-32 at the start of the fourth.

In the fourth quarter, Har-Ber made as many free throws as Cabot did the entire game, going 12 for 15 from the line, which helped the Lady Wildcats pull away from the Lady Panthers down the stretch. For the game, Har-Ber made 23 of 32 foul shots, while Cabot made 12 of 20.

Cabot entered the state tournament on a nine-game winning streak, which helped the Lady Panthers earn a share of the 7A/6A-East Conference championship – sharing that title with North Little Rock and Little Rock Central.

Despite being conference co-champions, Cabot entered the state tournament as the No. 3 seed from the East, behind Central and NLR. That put the Lady Panthers against the No. 4 West seed Lady Wildcats.

As far as what led to the loss, Cabot coach Carla Crowder said it came down to the fact that her team just didn’t play as well as it had been.

“I think we just didn’t play well,” said Crowder. “Har-Ber is a really good team and I don’t want to take anything away from them. I thought our kids played really hard throughout the year. They worked really hard and I’m really proud of them. I just hate it that we have to end like that.”

Friday’s game was the last in a CHS uniform for seniors Alyssa Hamilton, Danielle McWilliams, Maddie Willhite and Emily McCaghren, and those four will be missed, according to Crowder.

“We’ve got four seniors, and all four are great kids,” Crowder said. “We hate losing those four.”

Hamilton led all scorers Friday with 19 points.