HV loses at final horn

Photo by John Bryant
The Lady Warriors' Amber Duncan works the perimeter with the ball.

  GRAY -- Happy Valley may have had Daniel Boone on the ropes, but it was Rusty Mabe who applied the knockout punch.
  The senior guard scored the game's final seven points, including a layup at the buzzer, to lift the Trailblazers past the Warriors 45-44 in non-conference basketball action. Boone ended the game on a 9-0 run.
  "I thought we were in pretty good shape," Happy Valley coach Charlie Bayless said. "But we went down and threw the ball away, missed our foul shots."
  Greg Swafford and Chris Rutledge had nailed consecutive 3-pointers to make it 44-36 with 4:05 remaining. It was 44-38 before Mabe converted a three-point play with 1:11 to go.
  Toney missed a front end and five seconds later Mabe sank two free throws to pull Boone (8-2) within 44-43 with 12.2 on the clock.
  With 9.2 remaining, Swafford missed a front end. As the horn sounded Hicks banked in a double-pump, scoop shot under the basket.
  "Mabe and (Kevin) Champagne are two good scorers," Bayless said. "We didn't make our foul shots when we needed them. When it gets down to the nitty gritty you're supposed to make them to up your lead.
  "If you've got a good ball club, and they're down like that, that's when you ought to make hay. We didn't make hay. We took one or two bad shots, then we missed two foul shots."
  Bayless pointed out a failed alley-oop attempt from Ryan Toney to Alex Carroll was critical, in that the veteran coach felt it would have likely sealed the deal.
  "Alex missed a good shot," Bayless said. "Toney gave him a good pass. That would have put us up 10 points right there.
  "You've got to make those things when you're playing a pretty good ball club. You can't make mistakes and beat a good ball club."
  Mabe gunned in 22 points. Champagne totaled 14 points, 12 boards and three steals. The Trailblazers were 7 of 11 at the line.
  The Warriors (6-3) won the battle on the boards 36-25 and were 9 of 15 on free throws. Andrew Bowman had 13 points and 11 rebounds, Carroll totaled 10 points, 14 boards and six blocked shots, Rutledge scored 11 and Toney grabbed seven rebounds.
  Boone led 14-10 after one period. Mabe and Champagne scored back-to-back buckets to give the Trailblazers a 24-23 halftime advantage.
  Bowman propeled the Warriors ahead 32-31 heading in the final quarter, when Carroll had four blocks.
  Daniel Boone (girls) 53
  Happy Valley 33
  The Lady Warriors (2-7) were out of their league in this non-conference drubbing.
  "They're still a pretty solid basketball team," Happy Valley coach Ben Godsey said. "They're pretty disciplined and they played a lot harder than we did. We're still continuing down that path, getting out-hustled and getting out-played.
  "The only thing we can do is work and try to get better. We're not a good basketball team at this point."
  Boone (6-3) got 17 points from Amanda Hawkes, who fired in five 3-pointers. Haylee Collins added nine rebounds, Keli Petty came up with four steals and Sarah Jessee made 3.
  The Trailblazers were 18 of 26 at the line and out-rebounded the Warriors 33-29. Keila Williams led Happy Valley with eight points and seven boards while the defense sagged on her all night.
  "We had a little bit of success last week, but we played a pretty decent basketball team tonight," Godsey said. "They're not as good as they were a couple of years ago. They're still solid, and it showed tonight. They played good defense on us.
  "We've got a lot of work to do. We're still trying to find a leader of the team."
  Boone surged to a 20-6 lead after one quarter. Despite the Warriors' Amber Duncan draining a pair of 3-pointers, the margin was increased to 29-12 at the break and 42-19 heading in the final period.