Walla Walla Valley Academy girls lose heartbreaker to Gar-Pal in OT

A 3-pointer at the buzzer sends the game into OT and the Vikings ride the momentum to victory.

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COLLEGE PLACE - The ball didn't bounce Walla Walla Valley Academy's way here Monday night and as a result the Knights' playoff future is still in doubt.

Garfield-Palouse's Lacee Hendrickson drained an unlikely 3-point basket as the fourth-quarter horn went off, knotting the Southeast B District cross division girls basketball game at 29-29 and sending it into overtime. And the Vikings' Kaycie Adair scored 10 of her game-high 25 points in the extra session as the visitors escaped with a 42-35 victory.

The loss dropped WWVA to 1-5 in the district's Southern Division standings. The Knights are a half a game ahead of Dayton (1-6) in a battle for fourth place and a guaranteed berth in the district tournament.

The Knights are back in action tonight at DeSales and close out the regular season Thursday at Waitsburg-Prescott. Dayton plays its only remaining game Friday night when the Bulldogs entertain DeSales.

WWVA can assure itself of no worse than a tie for fourth place by winning one of its two remaining games. Two Knight victories and a Dayton loss would give WWVA sole possession of fourth place. However, two WWVA losses and a Dayton victory would leave the Knights in fifth place and force a play-in game against a team from the Northern Division to complete the district field.

"We want to avoid that play-in game if we can," Knights coach Monty Buell said. "We don't want to do that."

Buell would probably like to have a do-over of the final five seconds of Monday night's game as well.

WWVA held a three-point lead with five seconds remaining and intentionally fouled to avoid a 3-point Vikings basket that would tie the game. After missing the first free-throw attempt, the Vikings intentionally missed the second.

"They just threw it up," Buell said. "The ball bounced around on the rim, we couldn't secure it and it got passed out to Hendrickson. The horn sounded with the ball in the air, and it went through.

"That sort of pumped them up and took the wind out of our sails. They took it to us in overtime."

Gar-Pal scored the first six points of the extra period and WWVA never got closer than five.

Elizabeth Field led WWVA's offense with 15 points and nine rebounds.

The Knights got off to a 9-2 lead after one quarter but trailed 12-11 at halftime. The home team then rallied for a 22-16 lead after three quarters and appeared to have an important victory in hand until Hendrickson's last-gasp 3-pointer.

"We kind of let one get away," Buell said.

GARFIELD-PALOUSE (42) - Bofenkamp 0 0-0 0, Leendersten 0 0-0 0, Adair 6 11-18 25, Li, Hendrickson 0 0-0 0, Martin 0 0-0 0, Nelson 0 0-0 0, Taylor 1 1-2 3, Woltering 2 2-3 6, Johnson 0 0-0 0, La. Hendrickson 3 1-4 8. Totals 12 15-27 42.

WALLA WALLA VALLEY ACADEMY (35) - Em. Field 1 0-0 2, Felice 0 1-3 1, K. Buell 2 2-6 6, Moore 1 5-9 7, V. Buell 1 0-0 2, El. Field 5 5-9 15, Will 0 0-0 0, Brewer 0 0-0 0, Patino 0 0-0 0, Schafer 1 0-0 2. Totals 11 13-27 35.

Gar-Pal 2 10 4 13 13-42

WWVA 9 2 11 7 6-35

3-point goals - Gar-Pal (Adair 2, La, Hendrickson). Total fouls - WWVA 29, Gar-Pal 21. Fouled out - Gar-Pal (Adair), WWVA (K. Buell, V. Buell, Brewer). Technical fouls - Gar-Pal (bench). Rebounds - WWVA 32 (El. Field 9), Gar-Pal 29 (La. Hendrickson 8).

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