Sims’ free throws push Cougars past Chargers

Thursday, December 21, 2017
North Putnam’s Hannah Sims hit the winning free throws against North Montgomery on Thursday night.
Banner graphic file photo/JOEY BENNETT

LINDEN — Sophomore Hannah Sims played like a veteran senior, instead of a sophomore, as she stepped to the foul line with eight-tenths of a second remaining in the game with the score tied at 40 against North Montgomery.

All she did was hit the first. Then she hit the second one and the Cougars walked away with a thrilling 42-40 road victory.

“Hannah has had some ups and downs this season as I expected,” Cougar coach Jarrod Duff said. “But she is the type of player that wants the ball with game on the line. She wanted it tonight and she came through in he clutch. I am so proud of her and the entire team this is a big win for us and our program.”

The Cougars seemed to be in control the entire game but it took a steal with 8.7 seconds by Sims who then drove the length of the floor and was fouled going up for the winning layup.

That set the stage for the two winning free throws.

Sims has been a mainstay at the foul line all night as she scored 13 of her game-high 19 points from the charity stripe where she ended the night 13 for 17. That included 6 of 9 in the fourth quarter.

As a team the Cougars outscored the Chargers (7-7) 19-12 from the foul line, which was the difference in the game. That included hitting 10 of 15 in the fourth quarter.

“Hitting 10 of 15 might not sound like a great percentage, but compared to where we have been in the last two years that’s a great improvement,” Duff said.

The Cougars needed the last-second heroics, as they saw an eight-point fourth quarter lead completely disappear when North Montgomery’s Caroline McClaskey buried a 3-pointer with 10.8 seconds to play to tie the game. On the ensuing inbounds, the Cougars turned the ball over and he Chargers had the ball out-of-bounds in front of its bench with 8.7 seconds to play.

That’s when Sims stepped in for the steal to seal the game.

“We needed this win,” Duff said. “We have struggled, and a win like this can propel us.”

Sims led the team with 19 points, but a total of eight players scored for the Cougars. Payton Lyons added eight and Dana Tennis had six points.

The Cougars will be back in action after Christmas at the Speedway Tournament.

NORTH PUTNAM (42) — Sims 3-9 13-17 19, Runnells 0-1 1-2 1, Osborn 1-8 0-0- 2, Lyons 3-7 0-0 8, Tennis 2-9 1-2 6, Young 0-3 0-0 0, Gibson 0-3 3-4 3, Day 0-2 1-2 1, Simmerman 1-2 0-0 2, O’Neal 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 10-44 19-27 42

NORTH MONTGOMERY (40) — McClaskey 5-9 7-9 18, Humphreys 1-2 0-0 3, K. Sabens 0-5 o-1 0, Shirar 3-6 2-2 9, Sennett 2-9 1-2 6, S.Sabens 1-6 1-1 3, Mosley 0-1 0-0- 0, Altman 0-2 1-2 1. Totals 12-40 12-17 40

North Putnam 4 10 11 17 — 42

North Montgomery 2 10 9 19 — 40

3-point shots - NP 3-12 (Lyon 3, Tennis); NM 3-12 (McClaskey, Humphreys, Shirar, Sennett). Rebounds - NP 32 (Sims 5, Runnells 5); NM 43 (K.Sabens 9, McClaskey 8, Altman 8). Turnovers - NP 14; NM 27.

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  • Good to see this. Great job ladies and coaches.

    -- Posted by PutCoRes on Fri, Dec 22, 2017, at 7:14 AM
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