By Bryan Davis
A couple of weeks ago, the Oak Hill Academy Lady Raiders traveled to Heritage Academy and held the 6-foot-3, and heavily recruited, Rachel Hollivay to just 10 points. In the first two periods of Tuesday night’s rematch at Oak Hill, it looked like it was going to be another one of those nights for Hollivay.
The Lady Patriot came to life, however, in the second half of the game. It took all of regulation and one overtime period, but Heritage eventually outlasted the Lady Raiders 40-38.
Both defenses were working hard when the game started. Oak Hill’s Paige Dawkins broke the ice in the intense first quarter with a lay-up to put her team up 2-0. Heritage quickly put in four of its own.
Tori Ellis hit the game’s first three-point shot with five minutes to play in the first to make it a 5-4 Oak Hill advantage. In the next five minutes, there would only be two more points scored, a Heritage shot that sent the Lady Patriots into the second with a 6-5 lead.
In the second period, the defenses began to relax, as Ellis scored the quarter’s first point on a free throw. Trailing 8-6, Dawkins threw up two for an 8-8 tie.
The scoring continued to go back-and-forth, with Oak Hill’s Rachel Herndon getting her first two points, followed by Kayla Hall’s shot under the goal. Ellis put up three more points, as Herndon closed out the first half with a two-point shot to give the Lady Raiders a 17-14 halftime lead.
Herndon picked up right where she left off in the second with a pair of free throws and a lay-up to score the first four points of the quarter for Oak Hill. At the time, this gave the Lady Raiders a 21-19 lead, but that would be short-lived.
Heritage battled back to tied, and the Lady Patriots went on a tear, scoring eight consecutive points to take a 27-21 lead. With 13 seconds to go in the third, Maegen Ellis dropped in a two-point shot to make it a 27-23 game going into the final period.
It was time for the Oak Hill defense to clamp down, and the Lady Raiders did just that. In the fourth quarter, they allowed just seven points to the Lady Patriots.
Meanwhile, Ellis led off the period with another three-pointer. When Oak Hill got the ball back, she repeated that shot for three more.
Anna Ready then got in on the three-point action with one of her own, finally tying the game at 32-32.
Heritage would then get a two-pointer to make it 34-32, but when fouled attempting to make a shot, Dawkins sunk two free throws to tie the game with 10 seconds left.
Those 10 seconds were not enough for Heritage to march back down the court for a winning shot. The clock expired and sent the game into overtime.
Shay Atkins was the first to get on the board in the fifth period, netting two points in a quarter where there was not a lot of scoring.
Ready put in a pair of free throws that would tie the game at 38-38 with just seconds to go before another overtime period would come about.
Unfortunately for the Lady Raiders, Hollivay came to life in the period, scoring six points, including the final two with four seconds left on the clock. That would prove to be enough for the victory.
Tori Ellis would finish the game with 13 points, while Herndon scored eight, and Dawkins netted six.
Ready scored five, and Hall, Atkins, Maegen Ellis and Kim Kelly all score two points each for Oak Hill.
Hollivay finished the game with 19 points, most of which came in the second half.
Oak Hill will take the court again tonight, facing Lamar at home, beginning at 4 p.m.