(Wenatchee, WA)…Wenatchee squandered an 11-point, first-half lead only to fight its way back and nearly knock off Davis Friday at Wenatchee High School. But Demary Sugg’s 3-pointer at the buzzer glanced off the left of the rim and the Pirates held on for the 45-44 victory.
It was Sugg’s two three-pointers that helped Wenatchee out to a fast start in the first quarter as the Panthers built a 19-10 lead. The game was delayed for several moments in the second frame when referee Stefan Fromm inadvertently whistled for a Wenatchee timeout, even though Davis was in possession of the ball. Fromm, by rule, offered Panther coach Patrick Loftus to take the timeout, which he refused. That’s when Davis’ bench erupted, disagreeing with Fromm’s stoppage of play and the offer of the timeout. Coach Erin Smith pleaded her case while one of her assistants stood to argue the call and received a technical foul from Fromm. Clair Sirmon sank both free throws but Wenatchee could manage just two other field goals in the quarter and led by 6 at the break.
The game was really decided in the third quarter, as Davis came out firing on all cylinders, outscoring Wenatchee 26-9 in the period to take a 45-34 lead. But that’s when the Panther defense clamped down, not allowing a single Pirate point in the 4th. First, Sugg sank a runner down the right side of the paint to make it 45-37. Then Kami Worley posted up for a bucket to make it 45-39. Then Skyler Walton nailed a three from the top of the key with 1:15 left to make it 45-42. Demary Sugg made a steal on the defensive end and fed a lead pass to Alli Hallberg for a layup with 53-seconds remaining to cut the lead to 45-44. Hallberg missed a three-point attempt with six seconds left and Worley corralled the rebound and gave the Panthers one final chance. But Sugg’s heave at the buzzer clanged off and the comeback bid fell one point short.
The Panthers dropped to 4-and-5 with the loss while Davis improved to 4-and-4 with the win. Wenatchee is assured a playoff spot, but needs to hold on over its next three games to have its first playoff game at home.