LINCOLN _ Crofton through away the script and wrote its own storybook ending against Shelby-Rising City.
Allison Arens, a 5-foot-9 freshman guard, hit a basket with 10.4 seconds left in overtime to give sixth-seeded Crofton a 48-46 victory over third-seed Shelby-Rising City Thursday in Class C2 state tournament quarterfinal action.
“That was all ad-lib by the girls,’’ Crofton coach Aaron Losing said of the Warriors game-winning shot. “We didn’t use a time-out there. Whatever play we did have set up kind of broke a part. Bridget Arens took off somewhere on the drive there but I’d have to watch the film to see exactly what happened.’’
Crofton, 21-4, will face North Platte St. Patrick’s (23-2) Friday at the Pershing Center in semifinal action.
The Warriors, after taking a 42-32 lead following Maria Wortmann’s basket with 6:10 left in regulation, did not score again until Arens made a layup with 3:07 to go in overtime.
The Huskies closed out the fourth quarter with a 10-0 run to tie it all 42-all after two free throws by Madison Scow with 45.8 seconds left in regulation.
Neither team was able to get off a shot in the final seconds of regulation.
But Arens did twice in the overtime with Bridget Arens adding another basket and that was enough for the Warriors.
“Coach (Losing) just told that we needed to keep our confidence and to keep on shooting,’’ said Arens. “He told us to keep our eyes up and don’t fall under pressure.’’
Arens had plenty of duress in taking the game-winning shot, however.
“It felt good,’’ said Arens. “It was nerve-wrecking. I thought it was going in. When it did, my stomach started tingling. I didn’t know what to think afterward.’’
Even though the Warriors struggled offensively late in regulation, they never got down, according to Allison Arens.
“He told us we really needed to step up our defense,’’ she said. “We really proved that we could keep our confidence and composure even though we were down and hold the rope.’’
Losing was also glad to see Allison take the last shot.
“I think if there is any freshman in the state that you would want to be wide-open with a few seconds left to take a shot like that it would be Allison Arens,’’ said Losing. “She didn’t have a particular great shooting night but don’t be surprised if she catches fire tomorrow. She’s a great shooter and that was a huge shot at the end.’’
Shelby-Rising City had a chance to tie or win the game with 8.7 seconds in overtime but Chatrice White’s 3-pointer clanged off the rim.
White, a 6-foot-3 sophomore, who has already attracted Division I recruits, scored 14 points and grabbed 12 rebounds by halftime. White finished with 24 points and 17 boards. She was held scoreless in the third quarter.
“We just tried to get more people to guard her,’’ said Losing. “I think in the first half she got too many one-on-one opportunities. In the second half we tried to get people to surround her better and when she put the ball to the floor to try to dig at it and make her kick it out. We put a person in front of her and one behind her. I mean, she’s got a great future ahead of her as talented as she is.’’
Crofton led 35-31 after three quarters before the Huskies led by five at halftime.
“Crofton did a good job of doubling (White),’’ said Huskie coach Travis Weber. “We needed some other players to step up and make some shots and we started to do that a little bit today. Crofton just made more plays than we did. That’s what it came down to.’’
Crofton 14 7 14 7 6 _ 48
Shelby-RC 14 12 5 11 4 _ 46
Rachel Leader 0-1 0-0 0, Allison Arens 4-16 3-5 13, Kelsey Foxhoven 2-5 0-2 4, Bridget Arens 4-15 4-4 12, Maria Wortmann 3-4 4-4 10, Melissa Kleinschmit 1-5 0-0 2, Tiffany Tramp 2-4 0-0 6, Alex Allen 0-0 1-2 1. Totals 16-50 12-17 48.
Shelby-Rising City (23-2): Kiley Samek 0-2 0-0 0, Makanna Davis 4-8 0-1 8, Jessica Nekl 1-7 3-6 5, Chatrice White 9-14 6-8 24, Madison Scow 1-3 2-4 4, Maryssa Schleid 0-0 1-2 1, Kelsey Hopkins 2-8 0 0 4. Totals 17-42 12-21 46.