WILLIAMSPORT — Ashley Smothers pulled a disappearing act in the first half, then led Boonsboro’s girls basketball team to a hard-fought victory over Williamsport in the second half.
Smothers, who averaged 14.7 points per game in the Warriors’ first three games, was held scoreless in the first half. But she scored 14 in the second half and made a critical jumper for a 46-45 lead with 1:13 to play as Boonsboro prevailed 50-45 on Friday night in an MVAL Antietam contest.
“I don’t know where she was the first half, but she came out and played big for us the second half,” Warriors coach Max Shaffer said. “The difference between this team from last year to this year is we respond to tight moments. But we shouldn’t be in those tight moments. Our talent is better than what we’ve been showing.”
The fourth quarter featured four lead changes, the final coming when Smothers’ 15-footer from the right baseline hit the front of the rim, bounced off the glass and rattled in.
Amber Smith made 1 of 2 free throws to give Boonsboro (3-1, 2-0) a 47-45 lead with 15.2 seconds left. After a timeout, Williamsport’s Chelsea Scott missed from the left baseline with five seconds left. Boonsboro’s Kayla Payne got the rebound, started bringing the ball upcourt and collided with Scott with 1.8 seconds to play as whistles blew.
One official signaled for a jump ball — with the possession arrow in favor of the Wildcats (0-4, 0-2) — while the other signaled for a foul on Scott. After the officials huddled, the foul on Scott stood, and Williamsport coach Chris Malott was given a technical foul for protesting the call. Payne made 1 of 2 free throws before Smothers iced the game by making both technical free throws.
“It happens,” Malott said. “It was a hard-fought game and I’ll never complain about a call. One guy saw it one way, the other guy saw it the other way.
“We just have to learn how to win. We’ve got some young inexperienced kids, but we competed all night and that’s the best part. They played their hearts out.”
Stacey Christy scored 10 points in the fourth quarter for the Wildcats, who rallied to take one-point leads twice — the last on Scott’s two free throws with less than two minutes left for a 45-44 lead.
“I wish we could get four quarters from (Christy) like she played the fourth quarter,” Malott said.
Christy finished with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Scott had 15 points and nine rebounds and Casey Arnone added 16 points — 12 in the first half — and seven rebounds.
Smothers was the only player in double figures for Boonsboro and added five rebounds and four assists. Haley Payne had nine points and five rebounds, Kayla Payne had six rebounds and four steals and Amber Smith added six points and four rebounds.
Williamsport took a 23-18 lead into halftime on the strength of 13-for-23 foul shooting while Boonsboro went 0-for-7 from the line and had five players saddled with at least two fouls. But the foul situation switched in the second half, with the Warriors going 16-for-25 from the line — 9-for-15 in the fourth quarter — while the Wildcats went 6-for-8.
Note: Shaffer said before the game that guard Tori Poffenberger will miss 4-to-6 weeks with a sprained MCL in her knee.
* Courtney Malott made the game-winning shot with five seconds left to give Williamsport’s JV team a 32-31 win over Boonsboro. Victoria Key led the Wildcats with nine points, while Abby Duncan and Kristyn Davis each had 10 for the Warriors.
Boonsboro 50, Williamsport 45
BOONSBORO (3-1, 2-0)
H. Payne 4 1-4 9, Nettleton 2 2-2 6, Hawbaker 4 0-3 8, K. Payne 1 1-3 3, O’Brien 2 0-2 4, Smith 1 4-7 6, Smothers 3 8-10 14. Totals 17-54 16-32 50.
WILLIAMSPORT (0-4, 0-2)
Christy 5 3-5 13, Scott 3 9-12 15, Arnone 5 6-11 16, Lewis 0 0-2 0, Myers 0 1-2 1. Totals 13-38 19-31 45.
Boonsboro 10 8 15 17 — 50
Williamsport 11 12 8 14 — 45
Rebounds — Boonsboro 33 (K. Payne 6), Williamsport 37 (Scott 9). Assists — Boonsboro 8 (Smothers 4). Steals — Boonsboro 15 (K. Payne 4). Fouled out — Nettleton. Technical — Williamsport coach Malott.