Second-year Mulberry coach Adam Carlton doesn’t mind when junior Tiffany Edwards launches 3-pointer.
He knows eventually they’ll start to fall and that’s exactly what happened in the girls championship of the Lavaca Golden Arrows Classic.
Edwards hit four second-half 3-pointers and the Lady Yellowjackets’ tenacious defense forced three Mountainburg turnovers in the final minute of play to grab a 34-31 win over the Lady Dragons Wednesday night.
"She has the green light to shoot whenever she wants to," Carlton said. "She can shoot it from three or four feet from behind the line, and a lot of times she’ll make it. I know that if she keeps shooting, eventually she’s going to make some."
Poor shooting contributed to a low first-half score, with Mulberry leading just 12-11 at the break. Mountainburg was 3-of-21 from the floor in the first 16 minutes and Mountainburg’s 5-of-22 effort wasn’t much better.
"Neither of us lit it up in the first half by any stretch of the imagination," Carlton said. "But we kept playing. I have a good group of kids over there."
Mountainburg made just three first-half field goals and trailed through much of the game before finding some late magic. The Lady Dragons made their final three field goals Wednesday and might have won had it not been for the turnovers.
Lauren Becker’s 3-pointer gave Mountainburg a 31-30 lead with 1:37 left to play. The Lady Dragons were attempting to run out the clock when Mulberry forced a turnover with over a minute remaining.
Edwards’ final 3 of the night put the Lady Jackets ahead for good at 33-31. Then Mountainburg turned the ball over again with 52.5 seconds left to play.
Because Mountainburg had been whistled for just two fouls, the Lady Dragons were forced to repeatedly foul in the final 35 seconds in effort to put Mulberry on the line. That didn’t happen until there were 15.5 seconds left in the game.
Montainburg will get a chance to avenge Wednesday’s loss later this week at Alma’s Crawford County Classic.
"We’re going to see them here in a couple of days over in Alma," Carlton said. "They’re well-coached and play hard and the (Tara) Webb girl signed with (Arkansas) Tech. It’s good for our kids to play good teams."
Webb led Mountainburg with a game-high 16 points and 11 rebounds.
Along with Edwards, junior Lexi Voorhees had eight points and six rebounds.