It came down to a single play, maybe 50 times, in a hard-fought Northwest 2-A conference battle at Shoshoni Friday. The Lady Blue entertained their Fremont County rivals the Lady Cougars from Pavillion and the visitors emerged with a 46-45 win on a shot by Jonae Spoonhunter off a Natalie Walker assist with just three seconds left in the game.
Shoshoni had their chances as well, most notably on a Hail Mary inbound pass from Abigail Jennings to Hailey Donelson that went nearly the length of the floor but glanced off Donelson’s fingertips and out-of-bounds with 11 ticks remaining in the game.
Quick scoring bursts, hard fouls, tenacious defense, and an overall air of friendly disdain for each other permeated the contest.
Sadly, Wind River junior Allison Tidzump suffered a broken arm late in the game when she and Tania St. Clair had their find tangled on a fast break with both falling to the floor.
The game was suspended for about 20 minutes as staff from both schools, and nurses in the crowd attended to Tidzump with 3:20 remaining in the game and Shoshoni holding a 39-38 advantage.
In the opening minutes, the Lady Blue rolled to a 7-0, before Wind River recovered on an 8-2 run of their own.
The Lady Cougars broke into the lead on back-to-back 3-point shots by Tidzump and Amanda Jenkins to lead 14-12 early in the second period.
At the half, it was a close 19-17 lead for Shoshoni, but at the end of the third, the game was knotted at 28 points.
Individually, Wind River guard Karina Frederick was a water bug, sprinting across the floor effortlessly while harassing the Shoshoni guards near the half-court line.
The Lady Cougar defense stymied Shoshoni’s half-court offense on many possession, leaving Donelson isolated with the five-second clock ticking away and the passing lanes blocked to her teammates.
When Shoshoni took the ball inside it was a battle for junior post Tania St. Clair in the paint. She paced the Lady Blue with 15 points but was hammered on the low block repeatedly. She converted seven-of-10 free throws, all on fouls while she was posting up just feet from the basket.
The Lady Cougars were paced until the injury by Tidzump who hit shots in the lane, from the edge, and had that towering 3-point shot from the top-of-the-key.
Frederick added a pair of blazing-fast layups and a couple of 3-pointers to the offensive effort.
St. Clair led all scorers with 15 points and Donelson tallied 13.
For the Cougars, Tidzump had 14 and Jonae Spoonhunter scored a quiet 11 points on follow shots, short-range jumpers, and a single free throw. Frederick’s 10 rounded out the double-digit scoring.
Saturday the Lady Cougars host Greybull and the Shoshoni is at Rocky Mountain.
Shoshoni 9 10 9 17 – 45
Wind River 8 9 11 18 – 46
Shoshoni – Sonja Post (2) 0-1 6, Abigail Jennings 2 3-4 7, Hailey Donelson 4 5-9 13, Morgan Donelson 1 0-0 2, Megan Harris 1 0-0 2, Tania St. Clair 4 7-10 15. Totals 11 (2) 17-24 45
Wind River – Martina Large 1 0-0 2, Natalie Walker 1 0-0 2, Karina Frederick 2 (2) 0-0 10, Jonae Spoonhunter 5 1-3 11, Amanda Jenkins 2 (1) 0-2 7, Allison Tidzump 5 (1) 1-3 14. Totals 16 (4) 2-8 46