PEEL High School staged a stunning final-term turn-around to beat Dubbo South in extra time of their State CHS Girls’ Under 15 Basketball Knockout round of 16 match at Tamworth Sports Dome yesterday.
Down 26-16 at three quarter time, the Louise Taylor-coached side scored 10-2 in the final quarter to tie up the game 28-all at full-time and then race away to a 43-31 win after the visiting side had run into foul trouble.
It was a nervous Taylor who met the media after the game with her hands still shaking, such was the excitement of winning a game that looked gone and earning a berth in the State finals (final eight) at Terrigal in two weeks.
“It was nerve-racking,” Taylor said.
“At three quarter time the girls knew if they could get into the key they might create some fouls.”
That’s what happened, with two of the Dubbo trumps – Kirsty Trethowan and Ashleigh Taylor – recording five fouls and having to sit out the final minutes and extra time.
Also a big three-pointer from Chantelle Lee early in the final term ignited the side.
Lee’s big bomb was just the bucket the side needed and was followed by a Rheannon Berry lay-up before Lee laid on baskets for Aleisha Brown and Tshinta Knox to bring the side within one point with 2mins 30secs left on the clock.
When Berry hit a monster three-pointer, the Peel girls led for the first time since the first quarter and, with 1min 30secs left, looked like they might win in normal time.
However Maddi Chapman sunk two tense free throws to level it up with a minute left and, try as they might, the Peel girls couldn’t find a bucket to win in the final minute.
However, they didn’t have to wait long in extra time when Berry laid in a basket after just 14 seconds.
Then Knox settled it with a breakaway goal then a free throw.
Her second free throw missed but Lee claimed the rebound and cooly banked it in off the glass.
Three more goals from Knox settled the issue.
Taylor said the fightback was inspirational.
“The girls were nervous to start,” she said. “But their determination was great.
“Dubbo did run into foul trouble too and that helped.”
PEEL HIGH 43 (Tshinta Knox 13, Chantelle Lee 10, Rheannon Berry 7, Kiata Knox 4, Aleisha Brown 4, Cassidy Carter 3, Sheleaka O’Leary-Cloake 2) d DUBBO SOUTH 31 (Abbie Merritt 12, Ashleigh Taylor 9, Majayda Davis, Maddi Chapman 4, Kirsty Trethowan 2).