Lily Ryder's buzzer beater sends game to OT where Mustangs prevail
Edging Summer's Corners in TVDSB SouthWest girls' hoops AA final
Thursday, February 22, 2018
By Rob J. Ross
ST. THOMAS - It will forever be remembered as 'the shot' in Mitchell Hepburn Mustangs' sports lore.
Lily Ryder hitting a buzzer beating basket to send the Thames Valley District School Board South-West girls' AA basketball final into overtime, where the Mustangs pull out a 30-28 win over the Summer's Corners Sabres.
Down 26-24, after the Sabres scored with 11.3 seconds left in the fourth quarter, Ryder had the ball along the sidelines, opposite the team benches just inside the Sabres' defensive zone.
"There was a couple seconds left and they (teammates) told me to shoot. I wasn't looking. I just chucked it," said Ryder. "Amazing."
The ball, likely appearing to be in slow motion as it headed towards the hoop with no time left on the clock, sent the Mustangs in to a wild jubilation after hitting nothing but net.
"That was crazy. I never witnessed a basket like that. I thought it was over, but when the ball was in the air I thought that looks pretty good," Mustangs' coach Larry Westaway said. "I've never run out on to the court, but we were swept up in the moment."
In a three minute overtime, the Mustangs rode their sudden shot of momentum.
Ryder sank a foul shot for a Mustangs' 27-26 lead, before Lydia Gavey put the Sabres up by one. Grayson Moore regained the Mustangs lead with the eventual winning basket, with Shayla Congdon, adding a point from the free throw line.
"The girls played so well. Summer's Corners has a really good team. The fact that we gave them the competition I was really pleased. It was an awesome final," said Westaway. "Our defence. We did a really good job on their girls down low. They're bigger than us. The fact that we weren't letting them get the ball down low, kept it to the perimeter. We did a good job of rebounding."
Ryder, Congdon and Moore, each finished with eight points.
Selecia Wall led the Sabres with a game high 11 points, while Julie Nagelhout had eight points.
"It's gravy now after that. Lily's shot is all anyone is going to remember," said Westaway with a laugh. "It was nice we ended up winning the game."
Mitchell Hepburn advances to the TVDSB final tournament, Saturday, March 3.
The Mustangs beat John Wise in the semifinals and Davenport in the quarters.
During the regular season, Mitchell Hepburn won a tournament at Clarke Road secondary school, beating Lord Roberts, out of London, 31-19, in the final. At the Emily Stowe tournament, the Mustangs fell to Summer's Corners in the final.
Summer's Corners now faces New Sarum, in a South-West wild card game, Monday, February 26, at John Wise elementary school. The winner will join the Mustangs at the final tournament.
The June Rose Cobras beat New Sarum, in the SouthWest girls' 'A' final.
In boys' action, the Southwold Cougars won the SouthWest AA title, with a buzzer beating shot of their own, to edge the Lockes' Lions. The 'A' final featured Forest Park taking on Elgin Court.