Lady Lions outlast Maryville in overtime to pick up season sweep over Maryville


SEYMOUR – The King’s Academy saw a late seven-point cushion evaporate, as Maryville’s Jada Edwards nailed a game-tying three with 20 seconds remaining in regulation, but the Lady Lions were able to outscore the Lady Rebels 9-3 in the overtime period to come away with a 54-48 win on Friday night.

“I thought that fighting back as much as we did, we were definitely missing legs (in the overtime period),” Maryville coach Taylor Clark said. “They did a good job of getting it inside and I think we were a little bit timid in there, more timid than we were in the first half because of foul trouble. They hurt us inside.”

Brady Branham

TKA’s Brady Branham goes up for a basket against Maryville’s Jada Edwards (25) during the Lady Lions’ 54-48 overtime win on Friday night. Photo by Brian Hamilton

TKA’s starting point guard, Skylar Walden, played the entire 36 minutes of regulation and overtime despite a stomach bug. The freshman standout took a while to get going, but came up in crucial situations for the Lady Lions down the stretch.

“I told her, ‘You let me know if you need to take a break because your health is way more important than the game,'” TKA coach Dante Turnipseed said after the game. “At halftime, she was like ‘I feel bad, but I can keep going.’ I told her it was up to her, but she’s a warrior. She knows how much she can take and she was able to stay in and help us big time and made some big free throws at the end. That’s just a testament to her and how hard she fights.”

Brady Branham scored on a rebound and layup, followed by a three-pointer to give TKA an early 5-0 lead. Maryville would answer on the other end when Karly Hunt made a layup to cut the Lady Rebels’ deficit to 5-2 with 5:16 left in the first quarter.

Maryville would then go on a 6-0 run to take a 6-5 lead when Hunt scored with just over four minutes left in the opening session.

The Lady Lions would retake the lead 7-6 when Branham scored on a layup to give TKA the lead again. Maryville would jump back in front 10-7, but Liv Loveday would sink a pair of free throws to tie the game at 10-10 with four seconds remaining.

The teams were knotted at 10 apiece after the first quarter, as Branham scored the first eight points of the game for TKA.

Maryville's Zoe Harrison (22) looks to score while TKA's Skylar Walden (14) and Kyle Young (20) defend. Photo by Brian Hamilton

The Lady Lions would open the second quarter with a three-pointer, which extended the TKA run to 6-0, dating back to the first quarter.

A steal and layup by Hunt, followed by a drive and layup by Zoe Harrison would put Maryville back in front 14-13 midway through the second quarter.

Freshman point guard Skylar Walden scored her first points of the game on a three to put TKA back in front 16-14 with 2:47 left in the half.

Harrison nailed a three of her own with 1:37 left before intermission, putting the Lady Rebels back in the lead 17-16. Kyle Young would hit a three with just over one minute left, giving TKA a 19-17 lead, as the lead went back and forth in the first half.

Adie Blackburn came up short on a first half buzzer-beater and the Lady Lions would take a 19-17 lead into the half.

Branham had two fouls late in the second quarter, but managed to finish the half without picking up her third and only finished the game with four fouls.

“That’s something we’ve been working on,” Turnipseed said of Branham’s recent foul trouble. “I told her, ‘We’re going to leave it up to you how much you play.’ We’ve had a couple games where she got two quick (fouls) and I had to take her out, or games where she has had three or four and even fouled out. We kept her in and she went through it without fouling. She ended up with four, but that’s part of it.”

Hunt scored on a layup early in the third quarter to pull Maryville to within 20-19, but a layup by Branham would stretch the TKA lead back to 22-19.

Branham then hit her second triple of the game, giving the Lady Lions its largest lead since 5-0, at 26-22 with just over five minutes left in the third.

Blackburn responded with a three-pointer to cut the Lady Rebel deficit to 26-25 midway through the quarter, but Walden would answer with a triple to stretch the TKA lead back to 29-25. A rebound and layup by Branham would give the Lady Lions their largest lead of the game at 31-25 with 3:24 left in the third quarter.

Skylar Walden

Skylar Walden (14) goes up for a three during the Lady Lions’ overtime win. The freshman point guard hit four three-pointers on the night. Photo by Brian Hamilton

Walden hit her third three-pointer of the game with eight seconds left in the third period, as TKA would take a 36-29 lead into the fourth quarter.

A fourth Walden three would put TKA in front 44-37 with just over five minutes left in the game, but a pair of baskets by Hunt would pull Maryville to within 44-41 with 4:36 remaining.

Ella Loft split a pair of free throws to make the score 44-42 midway through the final quarter, as the Lady Rebels went on a 5-0 run.

The King’s Academy held onto a 45-42 lead for all of two minutes until Maryville’s Jada Edwards came up with her only basket of the game at the most important time. The senior nailed a game-tying three from the left wing to tie the game at 45-45 with 20 seconds left in the game.

“They jumped out in a zone on us and what we drew up wasn’t for a zone, but the rest of the girls did a really good job of reading it and finding the seams in it,” Maryville’s Clark said. “Jada did a good job of knocking down the shot. She was frustrated early in the game because she wasn’t hitting the shots that she normally does hit and that was big for her to step up at that point in time.”

“We miscommunicated and when we got there, we got there too late,” Turnipseed said. “That’s a senior and she was going to hit a big shot for her team and that was a big shot for her.”

TKA inbounded the ball and Turnipseed called timeout with nine seconds remaining in the game. On the inbounds, the Lady Lions looked to feed the ball in to Branham, but the pass was deflected out of bounds by Maryville with 0.1 seconds left in the game.


TKA’s Skylar Walden (14) blocks a shot by Maryville’s Brook Skoog. Photo by Brian Hamilton

“We ran a back screen for Brady and it was just bad timing,” Turnipseed said. “We drew up something that we do already, but we just haven’t showed it a lot. I think we got the look we wanted, but we just didn’t get the ball to her in time and they played good defense in getting a hand on it.”

Without enough time left to catch and shoot, Turnipseed said he hoped that Branham may be able to draw a foul on the inbounds pass. The tactic did not succeed and the game went to overtime tied at 45-45.

“I made sure and asked the referees, ‘If they tip it in from here, it does not count, right?’ and they said, ‘No, it doesn’t.'” Clark said after the game. “I told them, ‘Just don’t foul at all.'”

It was all TKA in overtime, however, as the Lady Lions took an early 47-45 lead, followed by an old-fashioned three-point play by Loveday, as the freshman got to the rim and was fouled, giving TKA a 50-45 advantage.

TKA led 51-45 when Harrison nailed a three for Maryville with 18 seconds remaining, cutting the Lady Lions’ lead to 51-48 and making it a one possession game.

Walden would convert free throws down the stretch, however, as the Lady Lions were able to come away with a hard fought 54-48 win.

“In overtime you have to execute and they did,” Turnipseed said. “I tell them all the time that when you win close games, it’s not about who’s the better team, it’s about who executes better and who makes the first mistake. Liv (Loveday) came down with a big clutch layup. We’ve been looking for her to step up big time and this might be the confidence booster that she needs.”

The win clinches the season sweep of Maryville, as TKA defeated the Lady Rebels won 60-43 at Maryville on November 30.

Brady Branham led all scorers with 21 points, while Karly Hunt led Maryville with 17.

Skylar Walden finished the game with 15 points for TKA, while Maryville’s Zoe Harrison added 13. Kyle Young also scored nine points on three three-pointers for the Lady Lions.

Turnipseed left bench players Kyle Young in the game in place of Bailey Tidwell down the stretch in the fourth quarter and in overtime, as the coach said after the game that he liked how that lineup was playing together late in the game.

“Kyle played really good and we just let the energy keep flowing,” Turnipseed said. “The momentum was out there with her and she’s been working on her defense. She came out and made some big steals and made some huge shots for us, so we wanted to reward her and see what she can do at the end of the game. We may need her in some more games, in situations where we know she can be clutch.”

The King’s Academy (12-4) will host Lakeway Christian (7-7) in a district contest on Tuesday, January 9, while Maryville (3-14) will look to end a 7-game skid, as the Lady Rebels host mighty Bearden (16-1) in a district matchup on Tuesday, January 9.


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