ANDERSON, Ind. — Taylor Potts made the winning basket with 10 seconds to play and then Sharice Jones made the decisive steal and the Anderson Lady Tribe won their home opener here Saturday.
Anderson topped Bishop Chatard 69-68 after rallying from a 12-point first half deficit and giving up an 11-point, fourth-quarter lead. It was that kind of game.
The Indians scored 47 points in the middle two quarters to take a 58-47 lead into the final eight minutes. But AHS didn’t get a field goal in the first four plus minutes of the final stanza and fell behind 60-59.
Chelsea Bentley, who had the second-highest point total on the team with 13 and tied for the lead in rebounding with seven, scored from in close with 3:44 to play to give Anderson back the lead at 61-60. During that stretch the Indians had three of their best players on the bench in foul trouble.
“I had Taylor, Sharice and Darien (Thompson) on the bench,” said AHS coach Chad Cook. “I was hoping we could pull through until about three minutes so I could put them in.”
Even with that trio back on the floor, the Tribe trailed 65-62 when an out-of-bounds play got Thompson a 3-pointer from the left corner. She missed the shot but was fouled with 1:10 to go. Thompson had adhered to a pattern in her first three trips to the line on the day. She missed the first and hit the second.
This time she hit all three to tie the contest. Without those freebies, the rest of the heroics might never have happened. She also topped her team in scoring for the game with 18 points.
Potts nailed two straight free throws with under a minute to play after she had only hit one of her first four tries. But Anderson still trailed 68-67 as the final seconds of the game began to disappear as the Trojans hit all three of their field goals and 11 free throws in the final quarter.
“I knew we needed a field goal bad,” said Potts. “I saw the lane was open so a drove to the basket.”
She hit a running jumper after absorbing a slight bump. The ball kissed the glass and went in for a 69-68 lead.
Chatard passed the ball in quickly and passed it downcourt for a chance at a game-winner. But Jones had another idea.
“I knew where the pass was going,” said Jones. “She was dribbling up that (right) side and was looking down that way.”
Jones was waiting for the ball and snatched it. She was swarmed by Trojans.
“I knew my teammates were behind me, so I threw it behind me,” said Jones, who is still wearing a knee brace from knee surgery. The ball went to Potts.
“I knew I had to get it and do something with it,” said Potts. “There was still time left.”
Two passes later and there was no time left.
The Indians always play with the idea that the ball belongs to them and the other team just has a temporary loan on the sphere. Chatard had 34 turnovers. That led to the Indians getting off 71 shots to just 39 for the visitors.
Hannah Gardner topped Chatard with 20 points and Marissa Collier topped both teams with 17 rebounds, an area where Chatard came out on top 44-39.
“I don’t think we really played all that well,” said Jones. “Last year we beat them by 40. We still have a lot to work on.”
Anderson plays again on Wednesday at Class 4A No. 3 Lawrence North.