WALKER — The stage was set for the host team to claim a dramatic win.
Walker High called its last two timeouts with 13.4 seconds left to set up the final play.
The Class 5A Wildcats got off two solid shots, including an outside jumper by Baylie Stears with 2.1 seconds remaining.
Neither found the bottom of the net, and Jewel Sumner was celebrating a 54-53 victory over Walker Friday night at Walker’s Lady Cat tournament.
“That’s a lot better than our game yesterday,” Sumner coach Kara Corkern said, referring to a Thursday loss to St. Amant. “Walker is the No. 1 (power ratings) team in 5A and if we can hang with them ,we can hang with anybody.”
It marked the second time the 3A Cowgirls (11-2) have beaten Walker (12-2). Sumner ousted the Wildcats 46-45 in a season opener last month. The game also helped highlight the second day of the three-day tournament that features 43 teams.
Walker coach Korey Arnold didn’t lament missed shots or the overall effort. It was all about rebounding for the WHS coach.
“Since I’ve been here we’ve only lost a few games,” Arnold said. “Just about every one of them has come down to rebounding and not being able to block out. We gave them too many chances.”
Ladarylin Goldman led Sumner with 15 points, while Diamond Brooks (11) and Anya Brumfield (10) also scored in double figures.
Kacie Fountain tallied a game-high 19 points for Walker. Jamie Gibson added 14 for the Wildcats.
Sumner scored the first eight points. Walker got within three points, at 22-19, on a drive to the basket by Keeona Brown. The Cowgirls scored seven of the final nine points in the half and led 29-21.
Two baskets and two free throws by Fountain ignited a third-quarter Walker rally. A layup by Fountain gave WHS a brief 33-32 lead.
Stears, a Southeastern Louisiana University signee, brought Walker back to tie it twice more with 3-pointers. The second came with 22 seconds left in the period and tied the score at 42-42.
Brooks scored three baskets in the fourth quarter to help Sumner maintain a slight edge. A layup by Brooks made it a 54-51 game with 1:14 remaining.
SALMEN 61, MOUNT CARMEL 55: Salmen scored the final 12 points to rally past Mount Carmel Academy in a game that matched last year’s Class 5A state champion against the reigning 4A champion.
Baylor signee Kalani Brown scored a game-high 18 points, but it was freshman Arianna Cooks who helped pave the way for a win by the 4A Spartans.
Cooks made a 3-pointer with 38.7 seconds left to give Salmen (7-3) its first lead of the game at 57-55 and later added two free throws to help clinch the victory. Paige Franckiewicz led Mount Carmel (10-3) with 15 points. Lauren Badino added 14.
KARR 47, ZACHARY 37: Karr dominated the early going and led by as much as 17 points in the third quarter. Imani Mulmore finished with 14 points and Rehema Franklin added 13 for the Cougars, who forced a series of turnovers with their pressure defense. For a while it looked like Zachary couldn’t cut the lead below 10.
Tamia Veal’s putback under the goal got the lead to eight points with four minutes remaining. The Broncos (10-6) eventually got as close as six points at 42-36 on a fastbreak jumper by Aleah Haynes with 1:30 left. But ZHS could get no closer.
“We’re a young team and we’re still trying to figure out who we are,” Zachary coach April Barnes said. “This is one of those games we can learn from.”
ST. THOMAS AQUINAS 60, WEST MONROE 56 OT: Hammond-based STA (7-3) outscored West Monroe (13-2) by an 8-4 margin in overtime to grab the win.
Jada Richard hit a crucial 3-pointer during the overtime period for the Class 2A Falcons. Regan Bolton scored a game-high 25 points, including four 3-pointers, to pace the winners.
Courtney Dawson added 19 for STA. Samarius Colquitt led 5A West Monroe with 22 points, while Abby Lee contributed 19.