In a season of New Year's resolutions, Barr-Reeve girls basketball coach Mark Holt most likely has a big one.
After six weeks of the season, he finally has his team intact, and able to play without restrictions. With just over a month left before tournament play, Holt has to attempt to plug everyone back into the roles they were intended to be in at the beginning of the season. The first effort to do that was successful on Saturday, as the Lady Vikings (11-2) defeated South Knox (4-7) 47-46 in double overtime at Kavanaugh Kourt.
Barr-Reeve constantly played from behind, as a variety of changing defenses employed by South Knox kept Barr-Reeve out of rhythm. A late bucket by South Knox's Hope Mikiska gave the visitors a 13-11 at the end of the first quarter. Stellar post play by sophomore Courtney Copp extended the Lady Spartan lead to 22-16 at halftime.
Barr-Reeve ramped up the defensive pressure in the third quarter, and a pair of baskets from Jenna Knepp and a long trey from Cori Cummings pulled the Vikings to within one at 26-25 heading to the fourth quarter. With the Vikings still trailing 29-27 early in the fourth quarter, they finally caught a break.
South Knox guard Olivia Carroll was whistled for a technical foul, and Jenna Knepp sank two free-throws to tie the game at 29. Hannah Bullock, seeing her first substantial action in over a month, then knocked in a jumper to give the Vikings the lead at 31-29.
The Lady Vikings appeared to be in great shape after Knepp found Tiara Kenney for a bucket and foul late in the game. Kenney completed the three point play to give Barr-Reeve a 39-37 lead.
South Knox opted to hold the ball until the final seconds, and a Carroll layup with 6.5 seconds left tied the game again at 39, and sent the game to overtime. Jenna Knepp looked to be the hero in the first overtime as she knocked in two free throws with under a minute left to give the Vikings a 44-42 lead. Olivia Carroll struck again however, as she made another running layup with
5.4 seconds left to tie the game at 44.
With the game tied at 46 in the second overtime, South Knox fouled Bullock with under a minute left. Bullock made the second charity toss to give Barr-Reeve a 47-46 lead. South Knox had three point-blank looks to win in the final 15 seconds, but the final shot by Carroll was short, allowing the Vikings to escape with the win.
Although he was happy with the victory, Coach Mark Holt was just as happy to finally have his full team in uniform, and ready for the second half of the season. "We are certainly happy to have everyone back, and this is Hannah's first substantial playing time since November 20. It certainly makes our bench deeper the second half of the season." Knepp led Barr-Reeve with a game-high 24 points. Kenney added 10 points and seven rebounds.