Day One of the Angelina Classic featured a pair of thrillers, with Panola and Southwest Christian College battling it out in overtime and the Angelina College Lady Roadrunners having to hold off a furious rally from Arkansas Baptist.
No. 19 Lady Roadrunners 94, Arkansas Baptist 90
The 19th-ranked Lady 'Runners watched a 20-point lead evaporate over the final 12 minutes, as the Lady Buffaloes closed to within a single point with :24 to play.
But Tyeka Ranton added two free throws late – part of her 34-point output – and AC escaped with the 94-90 win.
A freshman from River Ridge, La., Ranton hit 13 of 17 shots from the field and pulled down 10 rebounds to help preserve AC's four-game winning streak to open the season. Donia Naylor added 13 points and 16 rebounds, Marcy Robinson scored 15 and Jasmine Jones added nine for the Lady Roadrunners.
As for losing the big lead, Angelina College head coach Byron Coleman said it was just a matter of his team's inability to take its foot off the gas after keeping it floored all game long.
"We kept attacking all night, and when we needed to slow it down it seemed like we couldn't," AC head coach Byron Coleman said. "I told our girls we had to get better defensively down the stretch; we were allowing too many penetrations, and it seemed they were getting all the loose balls."
Ashley Gardner led four Lady Buffaloes in double figures with 22 points. Porsha Dannerson finished with 17 points and 13 rebounds in the loss.
AC will take on Neosho County College at 7 p.m. tonight. The day's other games include Arkansas Baptist and SWCC at 3 p.m., and Panola and McLennan at 5 p.m.
Panola 80, SWCC 77 (OT)
Fillie Candice Virgodamo hit two free-throws with :33 to play in regulation to give Panola a 73-70 lead, only to see SWCC's Nicoya Jackson nail her fourth three of the night to send the game to overtime.
So Virgodamo repeated her feat with just :13 in the extra frame to lead the Fillies past the Lady Rams 80-77 in the opener of the Angelina Classic.