Within minutes of the final buzzer signifying the end of Parkview Baptist’s 46-31 Class 3A bidistrict playoff victory Thursday over Loranger, Etta James’ “At Last” rang out over the public address system.
The time-honored hit, which was released in 1961, served as a fitting backdrop for a program celebrating its first playoff win.
“I told the girls this was the next chapter in the season and it was up to them how short it would be,” Parkview Baptist coach Jessica Shelton said. “Basketball’s a long season and it’s worth it if you go all the way to the end. I think they’re starting to adopt that way of thinking.”
The opportunity to build on the milestone takes place Monday when No. 10 Parkview Baptist (23-7) visits No. 7 Albany, an 80-62 winner over Jena, in a regional matchup.
Sophomore guard Skyler Goodwin was the catalyst in PBS’ second-half surge, enabling the Lady Eagles to turn a precarious 28-21 halftime lead into a comfortable victory.
Goodwin scored 15 of her game-high 27 points over the final two quarters, including 12 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter as the Lady Eagles alleviated any doubt about their milestone victory.
There were some jitters early. PBS missed 10 of its first 12 shots but rallied from a 9-6 deficit midway through the second quarter when Goodwin had a hand in nine of her team’s points in a 10-0 run for a 16-9 lead on Leah Collins’ free throw.
Goodwin fed Collins for a lay-in, completed a three-point play and finished a steal with a lay-up before Collins’ free throw. She added two more baskets in the final 47 seconds to complete her 12-point first half.
PBS relied on 3-2 zone for the first time this season to keep No. 23 Loranger (15-14) out of the lane.
The plan was to force to win from the perimeter and it worked.
Loranger was held to its fourth lowest point total of the season and shoot 19 percent (10 of 52) from the field, making just 2 of 31 3-point attempts.
Chelsea James led the Wolves with nine points.
“It was a very important win,” said Goodwin, who also had 10 rebounds. “The previous two years we hadn’t made it past the first round. Tonight it was great because we went out and played hard and just to dominate.”