Northwest Buries Churchill in OT

By Jim Dresbach
POTOMAC, MD -The most surprised person in the Churchill High School gymnasium Monday night at the end of 32 minutes of play may have been Northwest Lady Jaguar guard Katelyn Porter. Unchallenged as time elapsed and trailing by two points, Porter drove and scored her second field goal of the evening to send her Lady Jaquars and the Churchill Lady Bulldogs to overtime.

In the extra period, baskets by Caria Batchelor, Kendra Meredith and Camry Tonan proved to be the difference as Northwest outscored Churchill 8-2 in overtime and earned a 52-46 road victory.

"I was really surprised; I thought (scoring) would be a little harder," Porter said about her game-tying drive and lay-up. "There wasn't a certain play called; we were just to drive to get two. That (basket) kind of gave us a burst of energy."

The game-tying play came to be after Churchill converted just one of two free throws with 16.2 seconds remaining that gave CHS a 44-42 lead. Porter's lane-slashing drive and lay-in occurred in the final second and a half of regulation.

"There were a lot of scenarios to run; if they hit (the second free throw), we're down by three, and we need the three-point shot; they missed the second free throw, we got the rebound, and we pushed and looked for the lay-up," NW coach Rob Smith said as he broke down the Lady Jags' options. "Katelyn did a phenomenal job pushing the ball and getting the lay-up. I think they were expecting her to pass, but she kept going."

Batchelor scored 17 points before fouling out in overtime, and Tonan and Danielle Garrdute both scored 13 for the Lady Jags. The Bulldogs, who trailed early 7-0 but fought back to take a 27-26 lead in the third quarter on a Leeda Jewayni three-pointer, were led in scoring by Julia Gianngeli who scored 17, and the Lady Jag defense limited junior Sarafina Arthur-Williams to just three points.

"She (Arthur-Williams) crushed us last year; that's no secret," Smith said of Churchill's inside threat. "I think she had like 20 rebounds and 24 points. We said that our goal (tonight) was that she wasn't going to beat us."

The Monday night loss was Churchill's second overtime setback of the season, and the Bulldog 2010-2011 record now stands at 2-3. Churchill heads to Bethesda Wednesday for a date against the Bethesda-Chevy Chase Barons.

In the preliminary boy's varsity contest, Churchill's Christian Bonaparte converted four free throws during the final 20 seconds of play as the CHS boys held on to gain a 51-47 victory over the Northwest boy's squad.