No. 19 Highlassies fall to No. 6 Blinn in OT

No. 19 Highlassies fall to No. 6 Blinn in OT

The 19th-ranked McLennan Highlassies opened the 2022-23 season and the Bill Brock coaching era with a heart wrenching 81-74 overtime to the No. 6 Blinn Buccaneers.
 
It was slow going for both teams offensively to start. Blinn built at 7-2 lead with 6:44 to go in the first before. An arching 3-pointer from sophomore Chelsea Wooten gave McLennan its first field goal of the contest. Sophomore Miannah Little added a pair of free throws with 6:10 on the clock to tie the game at seven. The Buccaneers led by as many as five in the period, including the 18-13 lead with 2:13 to go. Freshman Niamh Heath came off the bench with back-to-back jumpers for the Highlassies to pull McLennan within one  heading into the second period, 18-17.
 
Blinn made an 8-0 run to opened the second quarter, extending the lead to nine, 26-17, with 6:30 to go before the half. McLennan didn't let the game get out of hand and responded with a 6-0 run comprised of buckers from Cynaye Bobbitt, Bienta Diatta and Wooten to pull within three, 26-23. The Buccaneers pushed the lead back to five, 30-25, with 30 seconds on the clock but a layup for McLennan by Aysia Ward cut the lead back to three at intermission, 30-27.
 
McLennan came out on fire in the third. Aniya Williams banked a shot off the glass to pull the Highlassies within one less than 30 seconds into the period, and a Saneea Bevley 3-pointer gave them their first lead of the game 32-30. Blinn used a 6-0 run to go back up by four, 38-34. A basket by Little and a high-arching 3-pointer by Bobbitt b]put McLennan back on top 39-38. That's when the Highlassies began to pull away. Little and Bevley heated up from behind the arc and gave McLennan the 53-46 lead going into the fourth.
 
Wooten opened the fourth with a 3-point play the hard way to give the Highlassies the first double-digit lead of the game, 56-46. McLennan led 58-48 with 9:12 to go. Blinn rallied, using an 11-0 run to take the one-point lead at 59-58 with 5:51 remaining in the game. The teams traded the lead with the Highlassies leading 62-61 with 1:20 to go. Little added a pair of free throws with 14.92 seconds on the cock but a Hannah Humphrey 3-pointer for Blinn tied the game at 66 and forced the overtime.
 
Blinn opened the extra period on a 4-0 run and led by as many as seven. McLennan continued to battle, pulling within two on a pair of Bobbitt free throws with 1:25 on the clock, 76-74. Blinn closed out the frame with Crystal Smith 5-6 from the free throw line to secure the win.
 
Saneea Bevley led the Highlassies with 19 points and Cynaye Bobbitt added 14. Miannah Little and Chelsea Wooten rounded out the McLennan players in double figures with 13 and 10, respectively.

Blinn 81, McLennan 74 (OT)
Blinn: Tiffany Tullis 10 2-6 29; Crystal Smith 3 4-6 11; Allana Thompson 3 3-4 9; Jasmyn Jackson 0 2-2 2; ; Amyria Walker 0 0-0 0; Makayla Patterson 2 0-0 4; Jakoriah Long 3 4-7 23; Skylar Barnes 0 0-0 0; Tianna Mathis 0 0-0 0; Hannah Humphrey 2 0-0 5; Totals: 35 15-25 81.
 
McLennan: Aysia Ward 1 0-0 2; Chelsea Wooten 4 1-1 10; Miannah Little 3 6-6 13;
Saneea Bevley 7 0-0 19; Jaydyn Bullard 1 0-0 2; Niamh Heath 3 0-1 6; Bineta Diatta 2 2-4 6; Aniya Williams 1 0-0 2; Cynaye Bobbitt 3 7-8 14; Aaliyah Holmes 0 0-0 0; Bailee St. Romain 0 0-0 0; Totals: 33 16-20 74.
 
3-pointers: Blinn  7 (Tullis 3, Long 3, Humphrey 1), McLennan 8 (Bevley 5, Wooten 1, Little 1, Bobbitt 1); Total fouls: Blinn 19, McLennan 25; Fouled out: McLennan (Diatta, Bevley); Halftime score: Blinn 30, McLennan 27; Record: McLennan 0-1.