HANCEVILLE, Ala. – Saturday’s first championship game was a battle between the Good Hope Lady Raiders and Cold Springs Lady Eagles for the JV Girls title and it was a roller coaster experience for the fans in attendance. Cold Springs dominated for most of the first three quarters and led by 14 going into the fourth but the Lady Raiders rallied and outscored the Lady Eagles 19-2 in the final frame to come from behind and win it 44-41, capturing the JV Girls Championship in the process.
Ella Bruer drained a three-pointer from the top of the key to give the Lady Eagles a 3-0 start and Ciara Calvert banked one in from mid-range to make it 5-0. Ella Dickerson added a pair of free throws to give Cold Springs a 7-0 lead with just under five minutes to play in the opening period, but Emma Bailey got Good Hope on the board with two free throws to make it a 7-2 game. Kenady Graves scored a quick basket off a turnover to build the Lady Eagles’ lead back up to seven midway through the first and Calvert laid one in to make it 11-2. A Dickerson free throw gave Cold Springs a 10-point lead and Erin Bailey scored inside to stretch the lead to 14-2. Bailey responded with a basket on the other end to cut the lead to 10 with a minute remaining in the quarter but the Lady Eagles went into the second with a 14-4 lead over the Lady Raiders.
Bailey Keef scored to make it a 14-6 game at the start of the second quarter, but Dickerson responded with a corner three to keep Cold Springs in front 17-6. Lexi Collins drained a three-pointer for Good Hope to cut into the lead midway through the period and Maddie McKenney hit a jumper to make it a 17-11 game. Addie Stripling drove to the basket and scored to continue the run for the Lady Raiders and trim the lead to four, but a pair of Dickerson free throws put the Lady Eagles ahead 19-13 with just under three minutes to play in the half. Calvert banked in a three to make it a 22-13 game and Graves drilled a three of her own to give Cold Springs a 25-13 advantage with 30 seconds on the clock. Good Hope got one more look at a shot before the buzzer but couldn’t get it to fall and the Lady Raiders went into the locker room trailing 25-13 at the break.
Dickerson knocked down a three to stretch the lead to 28-13 at the start of the third but after a free throw from Keef, Collins drilled another three-pointer to cut the lead to 28-17. Collins buried another three to make it an 8-point game midway through the period but after a free throw by Bailey, Bruer answered with a three on the other end to put the Lady Eagles in front 31-21. Bailey laid one in to make it a 31-23 game and McKenney turned a steal into another Good Hope basket to cut the lead to six. Dickerson scored to extend the lead to 33-25 with two minutes to play in the third and Bruer buried another three-pointer to make it 36-25. Mia Light drilled another three for Cold Springs just before the buzzer and the Lady Eagles went into the final frame leading the Lady Raiders 39-25.
A Stripling basket trimmed the lead to 39-27 early in the fourth quarter and McKenney drained a three to make it a 39-30 game. Collins kept the hot shooting going for Good Hope and knocked down another three-pointer to cut the lead to six with just over four minutes to play. Stripling collected a steal and took it the other way to for two points to make it 39-35 and she laid another one in with three minutes on the clock to cut the lead to two. Keef split a pair of foul shots to trim the lead to one and Bailey converted an and-one play at the line to give the Lady Raiders 41-39 lead with just over two minutes remaining. McKenney found Keef open under the basket and she laid it in to extend the lead to 43-39 but Light scored Cold Springs’ first bucket of the quarter to make it a 43-41 game with 50 seconds on the clock. Stripling was sent to the line and she hit one of two free throws to give Good Hope a 44-41 lead. The Lady Eagles got a couple more looks at the basket in the final moments but couldn’t get any shots to fall and the Lady Raiders completed the comeback to capture the JV Girls title 44-41.
Collins led Good Hope with 12 points in the win, followed by Bailey with 10, Stripling with nine, McKenney with seven and Keef with six. Dickerson led the way for Cold Springs with 13 points in the loss. Bruer added nine and Light and Graves each had five.
JV Girls Cullman County All-Tournament Team
Lauryn Hoffman – Holly Pond
Addie Stripling – Good Hope
Lexi Collins – Good Hope
Emma Bailey – Good Hope
Ella Dickerson – Cold Springs
Kabri Redding – Fairview
Reagan Dunkin – Fairview
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