The crowd nearly blew the roof off the gymnasium at Crothersville High School after junior forward Katrina Christian stole the ball, drove down the court and made a layup during the Tigers’ game against Borden to tie the game at 52-52 Tuesday.
The crowd’s excitement came as Christian’s layup erased a 19-point deficit.
Another round of cheers came as the Tigers captured the 57-55 Southern Athletic Conference win.
Tigers’ coach Kevin Hensley said the victory was big for the program.
“This is a huge win because I think Borden had beat us three or four years straight, it’s a conference game and it’s a sectional opponent,” he said.
Hensley added that it could be a preview of what could be in store for sectional time.
“We showed that we could beat them on a sectional night, so I’m really excited about that.”
Borden controlled the game 30-16 at halftime.
In the third quarter, the Tigers were able to out-score the Braves 21-17 before making a 20-8 run in the final eight minutes of play.
The Tigers showed an explosive offense in the second half as they outscored the Braves 41-25 in the third and fourth quarters.
Hensley said the game started uneasy as the Tigers could not hit a shot from the outside, which posed problems since Borden ran a zone defense most of the evening — that was until freshman guard Piper Hensley jump-started the team in the third quarter with three three-pointers.
Christian led the Tigers with 21 points on 10 made field goals, sophomore Lacey Hall added 13 and freshman Piper Hensley had 10.
Coach Hensley said the team showed a lot of mental strength by battling back and that kind of come back was probably not something that would have happened a few years ago.
“The girls showed a lot of heart tonight and they didn’t give up,” he said. “In year’s past, we would have folded, being down that much, but this team this year, they just keep on working their way at it.”
Hensley said he and assistant coach Chris Mains encouraged the team to raise their confidence even though they faced a large deficit.
“We try our best to show them that they never give up, no matter how many they’re down,” he said.
“That sort of lead to us being able to gain a little more traction outside.”
Hensley said he hopes the team continues to play with the same fight in the next game, which features another conference match up.
The Tigers are now 4-1 on the season.
“We play Orleans Friday night, so that’s another conference game and possible sectional opponent,” Hensley said.