PHOENIXVILLE >> Phoenixville-Pottsgrove girls basketball games always seem to go down to the wire.
The first time the two teams played, Jasmine Hamiilton made a last-second basket to give Phoenixville a close victory.
The return meeting Tuesday night was just as close. This one even went into overtime with Phoenixville prevailing, 30-27, in the Pioneer Athletic Conference Frontier Division contest.
Junior guard Ameerah Green scored nine points (one 3-pointer, 4-for-6 at the free-throw line) to lead Phoenixville. Seniors Liberty Allain and Jasmine Hamilton each canned six points for the Phantoms.
Green sealed the game in overtime while going 3-for-4 at the line while Allain had the lone field goal in the extra frame. The Falcons meanwhile went just 3-for-8 at the line.
Freshman point guard Riley Simon led Pottsgrove with 10 points while sophomore Summer Walker and junior Savannah Lear each finished with six points. Lear nailed a pair of 3-pointers for her output.
Phoenixville helped itself in its quest to earn a berth in the District 1 playoffs. The Phantoms are now 5-4 in the division, 5-7 in the PAC and 12-9 overall and are ranked No. 13 in the current District 1 Class 5A power rankings. Phoenixville will close out the regular season against Upper Merion on Thursday night in the senior high gymnasium on Senior Night.
The Falcons fell to 4-5 in the division, 5-6 in the PAC and 11-10 overall.
Allain hit a shot with three seconds left in the fourth quarter to extend the game. The play was set up on a pass from senior Peyton Graham.
“Jasmine made a shot the first time we played them and we had a lot of turnovers,” said Phoenixville coach A.J. Thompson. “We were fortunate to win, just like we were tonight. We gave ourselves a couple of opportunities, but we missed some layups. We could have made it easier.”
Thompson praised Pottsgrove coach Mike Brendlinger for the job he is doing coaching Pottsgrove’s young team. The Falcons have a starting lineup with one junior (Jordyn Mayes), one sophomore (Walker) and three freshmen in Simon, Sierra Potts and Sydney Mowery.
The Falcons also use Lear, a junior; and two more freshmen in Kyleah Holmes and Rachel Ludwig.
“Give Pottsgrove credit,” said Thompson. “Mike is doing a great job with those young kids. They put pressure on out there and we turned the ball over.”
Allain came up big on the shot from the right baseline with an assist by Graham. Both of them are seniors.
“It was a drive-and-dish play with Peyton,” Thompson said. “Liberty is very capable of making that shot. I knew she could. They are two of our seniors. They were in control of the offense and got us a big basket.”
Thompson also had kind words for Green.
“She had some big buckets and made some big free throws,” Thompson said. “She was key when we were able to take the lead. She has been our best free throw shooter all year long so it was good to see her on the line.”
Brendlinger talked about the setback.
“We had a seven-point lead in the fourth quarter,” said Brendlinger. “But we couldn’t finish it off. We had the inbounds play, had a turnover, and they made a three. Then we couldn’t get a stop when we needed it. We defended their big girls, but No. 3, Allain, hit the shot. Give them (Phantoms) credit. They made the plays down the stretch and we did not.
“Hopefully, this will be a learning experience. We have had a couple games like this so we can hope it pays off.”
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