Thu, Jan. 23

Mingus girls basketball falls after surrendering buzzer beater

Mingus senior Kaycee Williams battles a Volunteer for a loose ball during the Marauders’ 36-32 home loss in overtime to Lee Williams. (VVN/James Kelley)

Mingus senior Kaycee Williams battles a Volunteer for a loose ball during the Marauders’ 36-32 home loss in overtime to Lee Williams. (VVN/James Kelley)

Lee Williams followed up its shock buzzer beater with an 8-4 run in overtime to beat Mingus Union girls basketball on Friday night.

After the No. 23 Marauders took a 28-26 lead with 19 seconds left, it looked like they had secured the win, but the Volunteers grabbed a loose ball and threw up a prayer, that was answered and forced overtime.

No. 19 Lee Williams beat Mingus Union 36-32 in overtime on the Marauders’ senior night.

“I thought the girls played well,” said Mingus head coach Frank Nevarez. “I think we lost the game, especially in the second half, we were not protecting the ball, we turned the ball over. I think that’s what hurt us and then that last shot, we were up by two with two seconds left and then their player just threw the ball up and it went in and that’s part of the game.”

Lee Williams senior Siona Allen saved her only two 3 pointers of the game for the most ideal time: overtime.

“So we came out hard in overtime, their number 32 just hit two 3 point plays and we couldn’t recover from that but the girls they played hard, they played hard,” Nevarez said.

Mingus Union led 11-10 after one quarter and then 19-13 at the half. They built up a 26-22 lead after three quarters.

The Volunteers tied it up at 26-26 but when the Marauders took the lead with 19 second left, it looked like they had secured the win.

“It’s tough, it’s tough to come back into overtime and get yourself back into the game because the girls were walking off the court, they didn’t know what was happening because the ball was bouncing all over the place and their girl just got it and threw it up and it went in,” Nevarez said. “It’s tough to get back in and emotionally back into the game but I thought the girls did well in overtime.”

Senior point guard Kaycee Williams led the way for Mingus Union with 11 points. Junior small forward Summer Scott had eight points.

After Mingus Union went 6-20 in 2015-16 and 7-12 last year, the Marauders are 9-17 with a chance to make the post season.

Nevarez said they have grown a lot this year, his second at the helm.

“I think we went from playing last year to competing this year because we had a lot of close games that we could have won and we did win some close games,” Nevarez said. “So we did compete the majority of the year, which I thought was a big, big step forward for our program.”

Mingus Union has five seniors: Williams, forward Nikki Zielinski, center Trina Honwytewa, center Tannah Rice and center Stephanie Esqueda. Williams, Zielinski and Honwytewa are starters.

“So I’m losing some key people this year,” Nevarez said.

The Marauders close out the season at 5A No. 33 Glendale Raymond S. Kellis on Tuesday hoping to secure a spot in the play-in game. They need to be ranked at least 24th.

“We might still be there because they were ahead of us and we play a 5A school next week, Kellis, which the power points can help us,” Nevarez said. “So we have one more game and if we win that one, I think that we will make it into the play-in tournament, which would be great for our program, it would really be great.”

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