HC girls in final at Campbell after comeback edges Lee

by | Feb 14, 2018 | Harnett Central, Western Harnett

Harnett Central’s Michaela Cabe, shown earlier in the season, had 15 points and six rebounds on Tuesday night in the conference tournament semifinals. (Dunn Area Sports Photo/John Lucas)

Regular-season co-champions Harnett Central (20-3) and Union Pines (18-7) meet for the Tri-County Six 3-A Conference girls basketball tournament championship at Campbell’s Gore Arena on Thursday at 7 p.m.

The contest also will decide top seeding from the league for the NCHSAA playoffs.

Central faced a 39-32 deficit against Lee County (11-13) in the semifinals on Tuesday night at Union Pines before coming back for a 49-48 win.

Lady Trojans senior Maliah Banks was fouled on a 3-point attempt with the score tied at 48 with 15.8 seconds to go.

She missed the first two free throws but hit the last for the final margin. Banks had a steal on Lee’s ensuing inbounds pass. The Yellow Jackets fouled with 12.4 seconds to go but Central was not in the one-and-one. Lee rebounded a missed shot by the Lady Trojans but were unable to score in the closing seconds.

“Defense in the fourth quarter won us the game,” said Lady Trojans coach Chelsey Cabe.

Central trailed 13-9 at the close of the first quarter.

“We struggled in the first quarter to put baskets in,” Cabe said.

The Lady Trojans allowed just four points in the second quarter and led 23-17 at the half.

“They decided to take the third quarter off,” Cabe said.

Michaela Cabe, the coach’s sister-in-law who has signed with Peace, had 15 points and six rebounds. Banks totaled 13 points, six rebounds, seven assists and six steals.

Senior Jordyn Johnson-McLean had six points and 10 rebounds. Junior Marcayla Jones had six points. Lyndsey Brewer had four points and Jadyn Pretlow scored three.

In regular-season meetings, Central and Union Pines are 1-1. The Lady Trojans won 49-48 at home on Jan. 27 on a buzzer beater by Cabe. The Lady Vikings won 36-28 at home on Friday.

Union Pines reached the championship with a 41-33 win over Western Harnett despite 25 points by Lahaina “LaLa” Bell of the Lady Eagles.

“We’re stressing consistency,” said Coach Cabe. “We have to keep our tempo and intensity solid through the entire game.”

The Lady Trojans played two games at Gore Arena in the Harnett Tipoff Tournament.

Tri-County Six 3-A Conference
Boys Basketball Tournament
Monday, Feb. 12
First Round

Harnett Central 65, Union Pines 46
Triton 68, Western Harnett 52
Tuesday, Feb. 13
Semifinals, at Southern Lee

Lee 66, Harnett Central 49
Southern Lee 66, Triton 43
Thursday, Feb. 15
Championship, at Gore Arena, Campbell

8:30 p.m. — No. 1 Southern Lee vs. No. 2 Lee

Girls Basketball Tournament
Monday, Feb. 12
First Round

6 p.m. — Lee 46, Southern Lee 44
6 p.m. — Western Harnett 56, Triton 47 (2 OTs)
Tuesday, Feb. 13
Semifinals, at Union Pines

Harnett Central 49, Lee 48
Union Pines 41, Western Harnett 33
Thursday, Feb. 15
Championship, at Gore Arena, Campbell
7 p.m. — No. 1 Union Pines vs. No. 2 Harnett Central



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John Lucas