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Hartselle Enquirer

Hartselle falls in area championship

| Caleb Suggs
| Caleb Suggs

Caleb Suggs

Hartselle Enquirer

It was a big game atmosphere at Austin high school as the Austin Black Bears hosted the Hartselle Tigers for the area championship. It may have been at Austin high school but Hartselle fans went out of their way to make sure to neutralize the home field advantage. The energy was nothing short of electric as the two squads faced off.

Early on the two teams traded baskets. Anna Mathis would give the Tigers their first breathing room with a three pointer to put Hartselle up 10-6. However, Austin would score 7 straight points to take the lead 13-10. Hartselle would manage to cut the score to 13-12 by the end of the first quarter.

Early on it was very clear what the Black Bears game plan was as they double teamed star freshmen Mariah Taylor in an attempt to force other players to have to make plays to beat them.

Hartselle would begin to find their groove in the second quarter. Scores from Mathis and Lindsay Berry would give Hartselle a 16-15 lead. Taylor would add back to back three pointers to give Hartselle a 23-20 lead. Austin would manage to tie the game just before halftime at 23-23.

Austin would open up the second half with a quick score and then proceed to turn up their press defense. Maggie Anderson would take back the lead 26-25 with a three pointer. Mathis would add a three pointer of her own to make the score 29-25. Austin would cut it to 29-27 but Taylor would knock in another three pointers to make the score 32-27 as the Hartselle fans erupted to their feet. Austin would cut the score to 34-30 as the third quarter came to an end.

In the fourth quarter things began to turn bad for the Tigers. In five straight possessions the Austin black bears went down and nailed five three pointers. The Tigers did their best to stay in it but they had no answer for the Bear’s offensive onslaught and they eventually fell 57-47.

Player(s) of the game: Anna Mathis and Lindsay Berry. It was a very physical matchup and the Tigers needed players to step in and Berry and Mathis delivered. Their gritty play was key in almost earning the Tigers this win.

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