Highlanders, Highlassies fall to Ranger

Highlanders, Highlassies fall to Ranger

In a hard fought battle, the ninth-ranked McLennan Highlanders fell to the 24th-ranked Ranger Rangers 74-68 on the road.

McLennan appeared to be running away with the game in the low-scoring first half. The Highlanders took their first double-digit lead at 19-9 with 9:31 remaining in the half. McLennan extended the lead to 16, 27-11 with 6:49 to go before Ranger began to rally. The Rangers cut the lead to two 32-30 with 2:20 on the clock and trailed the Highlanders by four at halftime, 37-33.

Ranger took the 40-38 lead with 17:39 remaining in the game. The two teams traded the lead for the next four minutes with McLennan leading by one, 45-44, with 13:04 to go. Ranger took the lead on a Joshua Simmons 3-pointer less than a minute later and extended that lead to six several times down the stretch. The Highlanders pulled within four, 72-68 with 9.5 seconds to play but couldn't get any closer.

Jerami Grace led the Highlanders with 24 points. Shannon Bogues and Aundre Jackson added 20 and 15, respectively.

In women's action the Highlassies fell to the Lady Rangers 68-66 in overtime.

Both teams started slow with neither scoring during the first two and a half minutes of play. Ranger scored with 7:27 to play in the first quarter and opened on a 6-0 run. The Lady Rangers pulled away and led 16-6 at the end of the quarter. Ranger extended the lead to 14, 20-6, with 9:06 remaining in the second quarter. McLennan rallied, using a 13-0 run over the next six minutes to cut the lead to one 20-19. The game was tied at 22 with 2:12 to play in the second. Ranger ended the half on a 9-2 run to take the 31-24 advantage at the break.

The Lady Rangers led by as many as eight in the third quarter before the Highlassies began to rally. McLennan tied the game at 40 with 2:44 to play in the third and the game remained tied heading into the fourth, 44-44. The two teams traded baskets throughout the fourth quarter. McLennan led 56-53 with 2:25 remaining in regulation. A pair of free throws with 1:25 to go pulled Ranger within one, 56-55. The Lady Rangers took the 57-56 lead with five seconds to go. A Tayla Taylor jumper put the Highlassies up 58-57 with 2.8 seconds to play. A McLennan foul with half a second on the clock put Ranger's Aisha Isaac on the free throw line. She drained one shot to force overtime. 

McLennan led 65-60 with 2:29 to play in the extra period. Ranger used a 6-0 run capped by a Kirsten Fellows 3-pointer to take the 66-65 lead with 1:27 to play. Taylor tied the game at 66 on a free throw with one minute remaining in overtime. The Lady Rangers took the lead on a Jayde Price basket less than 10 seconds later and the Highlassies were unable to recover.

Taylor led McLennan with 30 points. Caylinne Martin and Diamond Ervin added 13 and 11, respectively.

Ranger 68, McLennan 66
McLennan: Kyera Coleman 1 2-2 4; Dariel Johnson 1 0-1 2; Diamond Ervin 5 0-4 11; Ariana Sanders 0 1-2 1; NiCosha Nelms 0 1-2 1; Tayla Taylor 11 8-13 30; Tori Thompson 1 0-2 2; Caylinne Martin 5 3-5 13; Totals: 25 15-31 66.

Ranger: Jazmin Shields 1 0-0 2; Tyrasha DeGrate 2 2-5 6; Aisha Isaac 3 4-8 10; Jayde Price 4 0-2 8; Kirsten Fellows 4 3-6 13; Mariah Merriweather 4 4-5 14; Giainne Oates 1 0-0 2; Jiavani Thompson 3 0-0 7; Ayanna Atkins 2 2-2 6; Totals: 24 15-28 68.

3-pointers: McLennan 1 (Ervin 1), Ranger 5 (Fellows 2, Merriweather 2, Thompson 1); Total fouls: McLennan 18, Ranger 21; Fouled out: McLennan (Martin); Halftime score: Ranger 31, McLennan 24; Record: McLennan 10-13 (5-3).

Ranger 74, McLennan 68

McLennan: Ben Nakwaasah 2 0-1 5; K.J. Boyd 1 2-2 4; Jerami Grace 9 3-4 24; Shannon Bogues 8 3-5 20; Aundre Jackson 5 3-4 15; Totals: 25 11-16 68.

Ranger: Chase Carlton 4 1-2 13; Jordan Geist 4 4-6 12; Trey Conrod 2 8-9 13; Kris Clyburn 3 9-10 16; Joshua Simmons 6 5-6 20; Totals: 19 27-33 74.

3-pointers: McLennan 7 (Grace 3, A. Jackson 2, Nakwaasah 1, Bogues 1), Ranger 9 (Carlton 4, Simmons 3, Conrod 1, Simmons 1); Total fouls: McLennan 25, Ranger 19; Halftime score: Ranger 37, McLennan 33; Record: McLennan 21-4 (5-2).