A 10-0 run in the game’s final three minutes enabled the Carroll County junior varsity girls to survive a scare and record their eighth straight victory Friday night.
Trailing an upstart Salem Spartans team 43-40 with 2:33 to play, the Lady Cavaliers finally broke out of a game-long fog to play as well as they have been playing all season and pull out a 50-43 triumph. It was the jayvee girls’ 12th win of the season against only three losses.
Before the stretch run, keyed by Kati Smith, Abi Easter and Johanna Utt, Carroll had trailed for much of the game.
Maci Hutchens and Utt led the Cavs in the first quarter, which ended with Carroll leading, 17-9. But the Cavs got cold in the second and Salem exploded for 11 straight points to take a 20-17 lead. Ingrid Cupp ended the drought by drilling a three-pointer to tie the game at 20. From then on until the final moments, the game was tied three times and the lead changed hands seven times.
Utt started the final rally with a bucket to pull the Cavs within 43-42. Smith hit a three-pointer with 2:05 left to give Carroll the lead for good. Utt and Easter then iced the game by nailing five straight free throws
Carroll was led by a balanced offense as five players scored at least six points each. Utt’s 16 were the game-high but Cupp added nine points, Smith and Hutchens seven each, and Easter six.
Prior to their triumph over Salem, the girls had swamped Christiansburg eight days earlier, 57-41, with a big first quarter providing the difference. Easter scored seven points while Smith recorded two treys and Utt had another six points as Carroll outscored Cburg 24-8 prior to the first break.
Carroll led by 14 at the half and by 22 after three.
Easter led the Cavs by scoring 16 points while Utt scored 12 and Smith 10.
The Carroll jayvee girls, who entered this week with a 9-1 record in the River Ridge District, have only two games left in the season, both this week, at home Tuesday and at Patrick Henry of Roanoke Thursday.