Seahawks can’t stop Villains

Published 7:39 pm Saturday, March 10, 2012

Southside basketball players (from left) Celeste Jones, Valerie Ruffin, Katisha Hyman and Chante Painter pose for a picture with the state runner-up plaque after falling to Bishop McGuinness 60-44 in the NCHSAA 1-A state title game in the Dean E. Smith Center in Chapel Hill Saturday. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

CHAPEL HILL — The feeling was so familiar, but unfortunately for the Seahawks the outcome was not.
The Southside girls’ basketball team stood huddled around coach Bill Lake down 14 points with four minutes left to play in the game against six-time defending state champs Bishop McGuinness, just like they did a week ago when they faced Lakewood in the East Regional finals. However, unlike last week when they overcame a 14-point, fourth-quarter deficit, there would be no miracle ending for Southside.
Instead, the Seahawks became No. 7 on the list of East Regional winners who could not figure out how to beat Bishop McGuinness as they fell 60-44 in the NCHSAA 1-A state title game inside the Dean E. Smith Center on Saturday.
“We don’t lose often but we lost to a really good team today,” Lake said. “We had some shots that just didn’t fall our way. We wish it would have turned out better, but it is what it is.”
Lake tried his best to urge his players on but topping a double-digit deficit in the fourth quarter two weeks in a row is a lot to ask of a team.
“I was telling them, “This is it. This is the time we need to step up. We need to make something happen,’” Lake said. “We started to do that, then they answered … It seemed like every time found something we could exploit they would adjust and close it off.”
With the win, Villains coach Brian Robinson broke the state record for most titles in a row.
“It’s an incredible feeling right now. I’m very proud of our girls, happy for our fans and happy for our alumni,” Robinson said. “I feel like I’m a very lucky person to be the head coach of this program.”
The third-seeded Seahawks (29-4, Four Rivers) struggled against a disciplined Bishop McGuinness defense and were led by senior point guard Katisha Hyman who scored a team-high 15 points and dished out four assists in her final game with Southside, while Center Deandria Purdue tallied nine points and four boards.
The No. 7 Villains (27-5, Northwest) were powered by their own star senior point guard in Sammi Goldsmith, who scored a game-high 20 points while collecting six boards and handing out six assists en route to being named the game’s MVP.
McGuinness also got a phenomenal effort from sophomore forward Cameron Nieters who poured in 16 points and grabbed four boards.
After two quarters of action Southside went into intermission with a little bit of momentum as a Hyman buzzer-beating layup cut the deficit to 26-18.
That momentum didn’t carry over into the third as the Villains clamped down on defense and made some key adjustments that led them outscoring the Seahawks 18-10 in a pivotal eight minutes of action.
“We went to a 3-2 zone just to try and change our defense for just a few minutes,” Robinson said. “I thought we pulled away in that one little stretch.”
That stretch led to a 44-28 McGuinness advantage heading into the fourth quarter. The Seahawks, who have overcome big fourth-quarter deficits three times already this season, could not do it for a fourth time as both teams tallied 16 points in the final eight minutes.

Southside    10    8    10    16    –    44
Bishop McGuinness    13    13    18    16    –    60
Seahawks (44)
Ruffin 2, Katisha Hyman 15, Mourning 6, Painter 7, Purdue 9, Clark 4, Hardy 1.
Villains (60)
Sammi Goldsmith 20 points, DeFrancesco 6, Cushing 1, Cameron Nieters 16, Petrangeli 5, Craven 6, Brown 6.