District play started Friday night in 22-4A for girls’ basketball. The Orangefield Lady Bobcats came away with an important road victory in the opener 42-37 against the Lady Cardinals at Bridge City.
It was a slow start for the Lady Bobcats who trailed after one quarter. Coach Jennifer Willis yelled some encouragement to sophomore Faith Fregia to shoot the ball, and Fregia obeyed her coach and did so after that. After being held scoreless in the first period, Fregia finished the night with 18 points.
The Lady Cardinals saw their star Kassidy Wilbur score the first two points of the game, but she would get into foul trouble and manage just two free throws after that before fouling out in the fourth quarter. Anaiah Hicks filled the void somewhat with four first quarter points including a three-ball and later a free throw. Madison Fischer got a bucket late to give Bridge City an 8-3 advantage which Orangefield was only able to trim by one, 8-4, after the first eight minutes.
When Macie Murty sank a three-pointer 25 seconds into the second it looked like it was going to be Bridge City’s night. Orangefield crept back in the game with baskets from Natalie Smith and Macie Adrio. Two free throws by Emmi Lummus cut the Lady Cardinals’ lead to one with 4:12 to play in the first half.
Bridge City went up by four on a three by Maysen Tyler. That is when the Faith Fregia show started. She nailed a three with three minutes left in the second and sank two free throws to tie the game 17-17 with 1:45 to go in the period. Smith gave Orangefield the lead with a bucket and Fregia would connect on two more free throws to make it 21-18 with 24 seconds before the half. Fischer just like she did in the first quarter sank a late basket to make the score 21-20 as the two teams went to the locker room.
The Lady Bobcat defense rose up in the third quarter and held Bridge City without a field goal in the period. The Lady Cardinals got all five points in the third by making five of six free throw shots. Lummus scored the first two baskets for Orangefield in the quarter.
Cameron Choate who was held to a single free throw in the first half responded in the third with a beautiful basket to put the Lady Bobcats up by five 27-22. Choate made another clutch bucket in the last 1:10 of the quarter after Fregia sank her second three. Orangefield took a 32-25 lead to the final quarter.
The fourth quarter started with Fregia scoring two more field goals to allow Orangefield to stretch the lead to eleven, 36-25. Tyler scored four straight for the Lady Cardinals. Fregia made the basket of the contest when she went the length of the court after taking an inbound pass and scored a layup to put the Lady Bobcats up 39-31 with three minutes left in the game.
Showing no quit the Lady Cardinals made a game of it late with Caitlynn Dennison coming off the bench to score two baskets. Tyler scored a hard-hat basket underneath and was fouled with 20 seconds to play. A free throw would have cut the lead to three, but it was not to fall for Maysen. Choate hit the front end of a one-and-one for the Lady Bobcats to close out the scoring in the game.
Leading all scorers was Fregia with her 18 points. Lummus finished with 9 tallies for Orangefield. Both Tyler and Hicks scored 11 points for Bridge City.
District 22-4A play continues Tuesday. The Lady Bobcats play on the road again at Hamshire-Fannett. The Lady Cardinals are also on the road against the defending district champions the Silsbee Lady Tigers.
-story and photo by Dan Perrine, KOGT-
OF 4 17 11 10- 42
BC 8 12 5 12- 37