SCA falls, but is on the rise
Published 10:55 pm Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Both its principal stars had fouled out, but Suffolk Christian Academy’s girls’ basketball team found itself in a tense back-and-forth contest Tuesday evening in the fourth quarter against visiting Great Bridge Christian Academy.
The Lady Knights took a 38-36 lead with under 30 seconds to play after freshman forward Tiffany Rombs hit two free throws. Great Bridge responded with a three-point play and got the ball back shortly thereafter, forcing SCA to foul.
Trailing 41-38 with 3.1 seconds remaining, the Lady Knights passed the ball down the court to freshman guard Julia Powell, who put up a three-point attempt. It did not go in, but the game did not represent the disappointment many might assume.
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“I feel like we played our best,” SCA head coach Tom Powell said. “So, having a chance to tie it at the end is pretty exciting, as well.”
Being in a game at the end is just the latest evidence of the development the inexperienced team has demonstrated. The Lady Knights entered Tuesday’s contest coming off a two-game win streak.
Last Saturday, Suffolk Christian defeated Great Hope Baptist School 32-26 for its first win of the season. Then, it toppled Alliance Christian Academy 33-29 on Monday.
“As a first-time coach of girls this young, I can’t ask for more than that,” Powell said.
In those games, senior center Caitlin Hankins led SCA in scoring, putting up 20 points against Great Hope and 14 against Alliance.
Senior point guard Jenny Rombs has been the team’s other primary leader, and Powell said, “My leaders are stepping up.”
On Tuesday, Jenny Rombs’ scoring brought the Lady Knights back in the third quarter, tying the game 23-23. But then she fouled out with 12.7 seconds to go in the period. She finished tied for the team-lead with nine points to go with five steals.
Hankins scored eight points, but she fouled out early in the fourth, and suddenly SCA was without its leaders.
“I wasn’t nervous because literally I’ve developed two teams — Team Grace and Team Jenny,” Powell said.
Grace Fowler is a freshman point guard who regularly leads a part of the team in scrimmages against a part of the team led by Jenny Rombs. Fowler helped fill Rombs’ shoes on Tuesday against Great Bridge.
Coach Powell was proud of how other players like sophomore center Zoie Howell entered the game and never quit, making Suffolk Christian competitive.
“What we lack in experience, they make up with passion,” Powell said. “They want to win.”
Howell stepped in for Hankins and ended up with nine points.
It was the first game this season for the Lady Knights to come down to the last shot.
Suffolk Christian (2-10) hosts Grove Avenue Christian School on Friday with the tip-off scheduled for 5:30 p.m.