There was a double feature of nail-biting thrillers the evening of Jan. 30 in a packed and loud Washington-Liberty High School gymnasium.
That’s where the Yorktown Patriots and Washington-Liberty Generals met in all-Arlington girls and boys varsity basketball games with close finishes. The Yorktown girls won in overtime, 53-50. Then, in the nightcap, the W-L boys won, 65-63, on a last second-shot in the Liberty District high-school contests.
The Yorktown girls (9-10, 2-5) snapped a four-game losing streak, with the W-L girls falling to 4-13, 0-7.
The seesaw contest had 11 lead changes, the last when two foul shots by Melody Linville (six rebounds) gave Yorktown a 48-47 advantage with 1:12 left in overtime.
The W-L girls led 8-2 early in the game, then rallied from an eight-point deficit early in the fourth quarter to tie to score at 43 and force overtime. The lead changed four times in the OT.
Leading Yorktown in scoring was Emily Strafford with 14 points. Grace Maria scored 12; Emma Nelson had nine points eight rebounds and two steals; and Maddie Winer had eight points. Nelson swished two free throws with 37 seconds left in overtime to up the lead to 50-47 and give the Patriots a little cushion.
For the W-L girls, Jordan Mosley had 14 points, six rebounds and three steals; Bridget Bartz scored 13 and had eight boards; Maya Srinivasan and Lucy Robinson (four steals) each scored eight; and Claudia Andrade-Ayala had five points and 10 rebounds.
In the boys game, also a seesaw clash, there were four ties and as many lead changes. The last tie was at 63 with eight seconds left on a layup by Yorktown’s Steven Lincoln (16 points, eight rebounds).
The Generals called time out to set up a last shot, and senior guard Anthony Reyes produced with a 12-foot running jumper in the lane, giving W-L the 65-63 win.
“When I got the ball I was going to shoot no matter what,” said Reyes, who scored 16 points. “I took what the defense gave me, and got a pretty good shot.”
Generals’ coach Bobby Dobson said the final shot worked pretty well.
“We were confident if he [Reyes] got the ball with a little time, he could get good shot,” Dobson said.
Washington-Liberty had a big third quarter to take a 55-44 lead at period’s end. Then, Yorktown trailed by 11 with 5:47 left in the game.
Thanks to a nine-point, five rebound effort down the stretch by John Pius (15 points, nine rebounds, two blocks) the Patriots rallied, and had chances take the lead, but missed a couple of three-pointers.
“Never count us out. We have rallied like that before,” said Yorktown coach Joe Reed, who stressed his team lost because it shot poorly from the foul line (10 of 21) and was limited by foul trouble and messed up substitute rotations. “We chipped away at the lead in that comeback, but the missed free throws was the game.”
With the win, W-L (12-6, 5-2) remains in second place in the Liberty District. Yorktown fell to 15-4, 3-4.
“We lost our composure a little bit when Yorktown came back and they made some shots,” Dobson said. “But our guys found a way to win.”
Max Gieseman had 21 points (three three-pointers) and seven rebounds for W-L; point guard Marino Dias had eight points, seven assists and four steals; William Reynolds had eight points and 10 boards; John Kimbrell had seven rebounds and two blocks; and Henry Erwin and Christian Stackpole scored five each.
For Yorktown, Aidan Stroup and Chris Short (seven rebounds) each made three threes and scored nine each and Liam Andersen scored eight.
Yorktown was without injured and starting point guard Brandon Warner.