Bertie ladies win league crown

Published 2:12 pm Monday, February 14, 2011

AHOSKIE – As championship games should, it came down to the final two minutes.

Bertie High and Hertford County High each had the opportunity to claim the Northeastern Coastal Conference championship in girl’s basketball Friday. The Lady Falcons could win the title outright while the Lady Bears could force a three-way tie atop the final standings.

And the game could have gone either way with the Lady Falcons holding a one-point edge with 3:45 to play. HCHS rallied, but in the end, Bertie came away with a 45-42 victory that gave them the league crown.

A free throw by Sherniece Futrell as the fourth quarter opened tied the game at 31-all and set the stage for a great final period.

Takia Williams and Camaryn Jones each hit 1-of-2 from the charity stripe as HCHS took a 33-31 edge.

Ayanna Wilson then did the same and closed the gap to one before Brandi Burden hit two shots from the free throw line to help surge ahead 35-32.

Bertie came back with back-to-back buckets from Montreshia Perry and Zahkeya Morris to take a 36-35 edge with 3:45 to play in the game.

Hertford County, however, scored the next six straight points.

Burden had a three-point play followed by a hoop to give the Lady Bears a 40-36 lead with 2:50 remaining. Briante Bond added to that lead with a free throw 15 seconds later, but it was the last time the HCHS squad would score until the end of the contest.

Bertie got two free throws from Wilson and then successive hoops from Ebonie Perry and Morris to take a 42-41 lead with 50 seconds to play in the contest.

Wilson then hit 3-of-4 from the line to make it a 45-41 game with under 30 ticks left on the clock.

Jones added a late free throw to establish the three-point margin, but that was it as Bertie claimed the league crown with a 45-42 win.

Bertie was paced by 17 from Wilson, 15 from M. Perry and 10 from Morris.

The Lady Bears countered with 15 from Burden, 11 from Williams and 10 from Jones.

In the early going, it was all HCHS as the Lady Bears jumped out to a 12-2 lead and held a 14-7 advantage after one quarter of play.

Williams hit back-to-back triples to start the game and then, after a M. Perry hoop, Burden had four straight points followed by a Jones basket to make it 12-2.

Bertie then got a free throw by E. Perry and a basket by Morris to close the gap to 12-5 before the teams exchanged buckets to establish the 14-7 lead for HCHS.

The second period saw the teams exchange scores until Bertie rolled off eight of the final 10 points of the quarter. M. Perry led the way with six of those points while Wilson also added a hoop.

Burden provided the only score for the Lady Bears, but HCHS led 22-21 heading into the locker room at halftime.

The third period was a back-and-forth, but the Lady Falcons got two late scores from Wilson as they pushed ahead by a 31-30 count heading into the final quarter.

The win boosted Bertie’s overall record to 18-3 overall and left them 11-1 in the conference. The loss dropped HCHS to 14-7 and 9-3.