CARY – As Prairie Ridge senior guard Sarah Le Beau raced toward the basket, she wasn’t concerned about how much time was left in double overtime.
Le Beau’s only focus was keeping control of the ball after she and teammate Kelly Klendworth forced Cary-Grove to turn over the ball using a half-court trap with 10 seconds remaining in a tied game.
Once Le Beau gathered the ball, she had a clear shot at the basket. Only one retreating Trojan stood in the way. Le Beau converted the layup as time ran out, giving Prairie Ridge a 50-48 double overtime Fox Valley Conference Valley Division win against C-G.
Prairie Ridge’s win sets up an important home game against Huntley on Friday with FVC Valley title hopes on the line. It also gave the Wolves their second win against C-G this season after going winless against the Trojans the previous 13 years.
“That was the one player I wanted to have the ball,” Wolves coach Rob Baker said of Le Beau’s game-winner. “There’s not many people in the conference that I’ve seen that I’d rather have the ball right there than Sarah Le Beau going to the basket.”
The Wolves (14-7, 8-1 FVC Valley) seemed headed for a comfortable win carrying an 11-point lead into the fourth quarter. But the Trojans (13-10, 4-5) opened the fourth on a 12-3 run, led by senior Sarah Kendeigh, who scored nine of her team-high 11 points in the quarter. Kendeigh’s jumper in the paint with 47 seconds remaining in the fourth tied the score at 38.
In what would become a recurring theme for the Trojans, they couldn’t take advantage of late-game opportunities. Three times C-G failed to convert when it had the ball at the end the fourth quarter and both overtimes. C-G opened the second overtime by taking a 48-42 lead and held Prairie Ridge scoreless for more than three minutes of the four-minute period.
But sophomore guard Aly Clark made her third 3-pointer of the game, making it a 3-point deficit with 43 seconds left in double overtime. Less than 30 seconds later, Klendworth hit a step-back 3-pointer to tie the game.
Only seconds earlier, the Trojans missed a pair of free throws which would have made it a two-possession game. Clark and senior center Maddie Drain each finished with a game-high 13 points while Le Beau finished with nine.
“Since the beginning of the season, we knew we were underdogs,” Le Beau said. “So we came in, tried to play our best and it has been working out for us. Now we’re just going to keep rolling ahead.”
Four Trojans finished with at least eight points. Sophomore Jen Pilut scored 10 points and senior Abby Glaysher added nine points, including six total points in the two overtimes. Le Beau helped limit junior guard Katie Barker to eight points.
“You’ve got to hit free throws,” C-G coach Rod Saffert said. “We had our opportunities and that’s what hurts them. That’s why they’re crying because it’s hard to take that. We had our chances. What else can you say?”