PILOT MOUNTAIN — The Lady Cardinals won back-to-back conference games this week.
East Surry edged Bishop McGuinness 55-50 on Tuesday after thumping West Stokes 55-30 the night before.
The Cards trailed the Lady Villains 43-40 in the fourth quarter, but went on a 8-1 spurt to retake the lead 48-44.
The Villains cut the lead to 50-48, but reserve Laken Bowman got free inside, then hit one of two free throws to give the Cards some breathing room with 23 seconds left.
Bishop started off the game with center Cameron Nieters getting free on slashes to the basket. She scored twice and appeared to score a third time, but was whistled for traveling.
Instead of a 6-0 Villians start, the Cards came back with three scores inside of their own from Keri Fulp.
A three-point play from Gabi Jessup made it 9-4. East Surry would hold the lead all the way until the end of the third quarter.
In the second quarter, Bishop’s Alex Putman unleashed a barrage of three-pointers, scoring all 12 points from long range.
With 4:48 to go before the half, Fulp dove out of bounds trying to save a loose ball. She missed the pads under the basket and hit the brick wall with her right shoulder.
She left the game, but came back about a minute and a half later.
While she was out, Sydney Mosley and Jessup picked up the scoring load and kept it going through the period. Mosley scored six and Jessup seven to offset Putman’s shooting.
Bishop had cut a seven-point lead to one, but Jessup made a three to give East a 27-23 lead at the break.
Mosley and Fulp scored to open the third for a 31-23 lead.
East was up 36-29 when Olivia DeFrancesco made a three-pointer and was fouled for a four-point play. Julia Brown then banked in a straight shot from 17 feet to make it 36-35.
After two free throws from Fulp, DeFrancesco made another three for a 38-all tie going into the fourth.
McKenzie Rochford hit her only shot of the game to give Bishop a 41-38 lead seconds into the period.
Fulp scored twice and Bowman once as the Cards went back in front 44-43.
After baskets by Mosley and Bowman, East Surry led 48-44.
DeFrancesco scored and Rochford drew a foul for a chance to tie the game. Instead, Rochford missed the front end of a one-and-one, and Jessup converted on the other end for a 50-46 game.
DeFrancesco avoided a charge into Fulp and converted a whirling shot to make it 50-48, but Bowman was open on a cut to the basket to score. Then she hit one of two foul shots on the next possession for a 53-48 lead.
Bishop made a basket with 16.3 seconds left and called a timeout at 53-50.
Lauren Thompson and Jessup each hit one of two fouls shots for the final 55-50 score.
The Cards made 10-14 foul shots (71 percent) in the second half, while Bishop was 4-6.
Fulp scored 14, Jessup 13 and Mosley 10. Bowman had seven of her eight in the fourth quarter. Thompson scored four, Kacie Markle four and Sydney Marion two.
East Surry came into the game fresh off a 55-30 win over West Stokes Monday night.
The Lady Cards were able to slow down the Wildcats’ inside tandem of Makala Bozman and Chris Madigan.
“We were able to get them in some foul trouble,” said Gunter.
Keri Fulp drew some fouls inside, then Bozman picked up a third foul at the halftime buzzer on a scramble play.
Gabi got the ball and was attempting to heave the ball about 30 feet as the clock ran down, said the coach.
Bozman tried to block the shot and fouled Jessup instead. Jessup hit two of three foul shots to boost the Cards’ lead to 24-17 at the break.
That was big both from a points standpoint and from the foul angle, the coach believed.
Bozman and Madigan ran into more trouble in the third quarter.
“They each picked up a fourth early, and that took some of the wind out of their sails,” Gunter said.
The Cards took control of the third, outscoring the Cats 19-6.
“Lauren (Thompson) and Sydney (Mosley) got into foul trouble, too,” said Gunter. However, the bench stepped up big.
Markle had six of her seven points in the period. She also grabbed six rebounds in the game and played good defense with five deflections, the coach noted.
Also off the bench, Karli Fulp scored four, Bowman three and Marion two.
Jessup scored eight of her game-high 15 points in the third quarter.
Keri Fulp finished with 10 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks. Mosley scored 10 and Thompson four.
Abby Harris led West Stokes with 12 points.