In exciting fashion, No. 5 ranked Papillion-La Vista was able to defeat Gretna 47-46 in overtime behind a Brooklyn Wrice buzzer-beating lay up.
Gretna’s Madison Haddix got the Dragons on the board early to make the score 2-0. Lindsey Ingwerson scored four straight for the Monarchs to give them a 4-2 lead.
With the score 6-4 Papio, Olivia Boudreau hit a three-pointer from the wing to give Papio a 9-4 lead, forcing a Gretna timeout with 3:00 left in the first quarter.
Out of the timeout, Boudreau hit a layup to give the Monarchs an 11-4 lead.
The Dragons were able to cut the lead to three, then an Ingwerson layup put the lead back at five.
The Monarchs were able to crash the offensive glass early, creating multiple second chance opportunities.
“Some of it was the way they were guarding Erica and Maggie they were really sagging off them in the paint,” Papio head coach Josh Siske said. “A lot of teams do that to us but the problem is those are our two best offensive rebounders so it gives them a free run into the paint.
“We try to really preach crashing the boards and we have some great rebounders and try to take advantage of that.”
The score was 14-8 Papio heading into the second quarter.
To open up the second quarter, Alexis Spier and Jaiden Albright combined for a quick nine points, all from three-point range. This run gave the Dragons a 17-14 lead.
Albright knocked down back-back three-pointers to give the Dragons a spark off the bench.
The Monarchs answered with a 6-0 run themselves, giving them the lead back at 20-17.
The Dragons kept raining the deep ball, as Alexis Spier gave Gretna a 21-20 lead with her second three-pointer of the game.
“I think we finally relaxed a little bit,” Gretna head coach Jerome Skrdla said. “I think we came in a little intimidated because they are a great team and we have struggled early in those games and so I think as the game got into the second quarter and we hit a couple shots we learned we could play with them. What we were doing defensively was working and it slowed them down a little bit.”
Gretna was able to put a 8-0 run together to take a 25-20 lead with 3 seconds left in the half.
Caitlyn Ryan knocked down two free throws for the Monarchs to make the halftime score 25-22 Gretna. Gretna outscored Papio 17-8 in the second quarter.
“Just to calm down,” Siske said about his halftime talk. “We just lost our heads there for a minute and lost our focus. We didn’t get into things we wanted to get into against their press and that’s part of learning and growing up.”
Alexis Spier started right where Gretna left off, knocking down her third three-pointer of the game and giving the Dragons a 28-22 lead.
Ingwerson hit a pair of free throws to cut the Gretna lead to four. Papio then forced a Gretna turnover.
Boudreau then knocked down two free throws to cut the Dragon lead to two. Madison Haddix answered with a bucket on the other end.
Brooklyn Wrice hit a driving layup to cut the Dragon lead to two once again.
Jenna Hoelscher gave Papio the lead with a three-pointer and Boudreau hit a runner in transition to make the score 33-30 Papio with 2 minutes left in the third quarter.
Papio extended their lead to 35-30 after a Maggie Vasa steal and layup. That was the score heading into the fourth and deciding quarter.
Papio star froward Lindsey Ingwerson left the game with an apparent ankle injury with 7:11 left in the game. She would return at the three minute mark.
Avery Kallman scored in the lane to cut the Monarch lead to one with 4:45 left in the game.
Erica Broin hit a layup and Boudreau hit a three-pointer to push the Papio lead to 40-34. Spier answered with her fourth three-pointer of the game to cut the Monarch lead in half.
Spier hit a layup with Gretna down by one to give the Dragons their first lead of the quarter, 41-40.
Boudreau hit a free throw with 2:06 left in the game to make the score 41-41.
A traveling violation on Gretna gave the ball to Papio with the score tied at 41 with 7.4 seconds left after no scoring for a minute and a half.
Avery Kallman blocked the Papio three-point attempt, resulting in overtime and free basketball for the fans.
Three Gretna free throws opened up the OT period, making the score 44-41 Gretna with 2:30 left in OT.
Jenna Hoelscher tied the game at 44 after a three-pointer from the corner.
Jaiden Albright knocked down a contested layup in the lane to give Gretna a two-point lead with 28 seconds left in the game.
Gretna got the ball back and then Papio was able to trap them into a steal with 15 seconds left. Papio then called a timeout.
Out of the timeout, Olivia Boudreau was fouled with 8 seconds remaining.
After making the first free throw, Boudreau missed the second. Boudreau secured her own rebound and off a missed shot, the scramble for the loose ball commenced.
At the end of the scramble, Brooklyn Wrice found herself underneath the basket with the ball and two seconds left on the clock. Wrice calmly put the ball in the hoop and Papio took the victory at the buzzer, 47-46.
“I was just shocked Liv missed the free throw to be honest,” Siske said. “We worked on crossing all the time with our posts and they did and that took the two girls on Maggie’s side with Maggie and that was why Liv was able to get the rebound and then it was just a scramble.
“Credit to Maggie and Brooklyn for not giving up on it and Brooklyn for not getting rushed because I didn’t know how much time was left.”
For Gretna, Spier led the way with 17 points. Albright and Haddix recorded 10 points each, respectively. Coach Skrdla had high praise for Spier.
“She really put in a gutsy performance,” Skrdla said about Spier. “She’s been sick part of this week and tonight she didn’t have her normal energy but she really stepped up and competed and I am very proud of her.”
For the Monarchs, Olivia Boudreau recorded 14 points, Ingwerson recorded 10 points and Vasa added seven points.
“Just to get better,” Siske said about the rest of the season expectations. “We still have to get a lot better and our schedule is tough here to end the season so we are taking tomorrow off but then back on Monday we have to work on getting better.”
Skrdla was upset with the loss, but proud of the steps they have made.
“We are getting better. They beat us by over 20 in the preseason game so I know we are getting better. Also, they are fighters. We still haven’t quite made that little adjustment to win a game like this. We turned the ball over a couple times in critical moments and those are things that we have to clean up.”
Skrdla added that “we still have work to do but I am very proud of them.”
Papio is now 16-2 while Gretna is 6-10 thus far.
Lincoln Northeast 62, Gretna 44 — The Dragons were outscored 20-11 in the second quarter to fall behind 36-21 at the half.
Avery Kallman led the way for the Dragons with 16 points. Albright added 11 points.
Papillion-La Vista 70, Bryan 26 — Ingwerson led the way for the Monarchs in this one, recording 15 points. Sara Carlson and Brynnan Sargent recorded nine points each, respectively. Boudreau added eight points.