WEAVER – The Sylvania Lady Rams came up just short of punching their ticket to Jacksonville State after falling to the Weaver Lady Bearcats 62-56 in Monday’s sub-regional bout.
The Lady Rams had trouble slowing down Weaver guard Caleigh Cortez in the early going. She scored nine of the Lady Bearcats’ 16 first-quarter points.
Sylvania kept pace with 11 points in the first quarter, with Bethany Davis netting five of those.
The Lady Rams then had several chances to cut into the lead in the second quarter, which saw Sylvania go to the foul line for 16 free throws. Unfortunately, the Lady Rams only hit five of those free throws.
On the other end, Weaver hit a pair of 3-pointers and had three buckets in the paint as they stretched their lead to 13 by halftime at 33-20.
MaKayla Bullock led the Lady Rams with six points in the third. Sylvania also had inside baskets come from Leianna Currie, Brinn Farmer and Tyla Tatum.
Weaver matched the Lady Rams point for point in the third though and still led by 13 at the start of the fourth.
The Lady Bearcats held onto that lead until the final minutes of the game when Sylvania started a furious comeback attempt.
With Weaver ahead 55-42 with three minutes left in regulation, The Lady Rams forced five straight Weaver possessions to end in turnovers.
Those turnovers led to an 8-0 Sylvania run, which cut the Lady Bearcats’ lead to five with 1:49 left to play.
That late charge was led by Davis, who scored six of the Lady Rams eight points in the run.
That was as close as the Lady Rams got to pulling off a dramatic late comeback Monday as Weaver answered with a pair of quick scoring possessions to help them seal the win and a trip to Jacksonville.
Davis hit seven shots in the paint and led the Lady Rams with a 21-point performance Monday.
Tatum followed with 14 points, 10 of which came during Sylvania’s fourth-quarter rally.
MaKayla Bullock hit four shots in the paint and scored a dozen.
Farmer scored five, Currie netted two and both Kenadie Lee and Riley Wisner finished with one point each.
John Mitchell of East Alabama Sports Today contributed to this story.