Tigers’ season ends in round four

Stephanie King

Although Spring sports got underway this week, there was still some high school basketball to be played in Randolph County. The Randleman Lady Tigers faced off against the Kinston Lady Vikings on Tuesday in the fourth round of the NCHSAAA 2A State Girls Basketball Playoffs. The Lady Tigers entered the game 24-2 on the season.

Kinston jumped out to an early 5-0 lead with back to back buckets before Hannah Hinshaw knocked down a jumper to put the Tigers on the board. Hinshaw drained two at the free-throw line moments later to cut the lead to one. A 7-0 run by the Lady Vikings put them up 12-4, but Gracyn Hall went one for two at the line for the Tigers. Kinston ended the first quarter with a three to take a 15-5 lead over Randleman after one-quarter of play.

Randleman opened the second quarter with back to back buckets from Hall and Hinshaw to trim the lead to six. A three from the Lady Vikings extended the lead back to nine, but a free-throw from Taylor Gantt and a bucket from Hall had the lad back down to six for the Tigers. Kinston drained another three to push their lead to nine, but the Tigers cut back to six once more. After a bucket from the Vikings, Hall scored down low to cut the lead to six at the end of the quarter. At the half, Randleman trailed Kinston 23-17.

Gantt pulled the Tigers within three at the start of the third with the Tigers’ first three of the night. Kinston answered on the other end with a bucket down low, but the Tigers drilled their second three to cut the lead to two. The Lady Vikings rattled off back to back threes to retake an eight-point lead over the Tigers. Gantt scored on a strong drive to the hoop cutting the lead to six. Kinston scored the final bucket of the quarter to take a 33-25 lead over Randleman.

After a free-throw from the Lady Viking to open the fourth quarter, Veronica Marlow swished a three to trim the lead to six. From there, Kinston used a 7-0 run to take a 41-28 lead. Randleman picked up a pair of free throws from Hall and a jumper from Hinshaw to cut the lead to nine midway through the quarter. Elizabeth York added a deep two to cut the lead to seven with just under three minutes left in the game. Hall extended the Tigers’ run with a three from the corner to cut the lead to four with two minutes remaining.

Kinston ended the Tigers’ run with a pair of free throws, but Veronica Marlow scored on a baseline drive cutting the lead back to four. After a free-throw from the Vikings, York scored down low to cut the lead to three making it a one-possession game. The Vikings added two more points at the charity stripe to ice the game with 4.5 seconds left. The Tigers put up a prayer in the closing seconds, but could not connect as they fell 46-41. The Lady Tigers’ season comes to an end as they finish the season 24-3 overall.

Gracyn Hall led the Tigers with 12 points, while Hannah Hinshaw finished with ten. Veronica Marlow added eight and Taylor Gantt chipped in six for the Tigers. Elizabeth York notched five.

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