A ‘Smalley’ comeback lifts Tigers over North Valleys
Madi Smalley supplied key rebounds and defensive stops to help spark a fourth quarter comeback for the Douglas High girls basketball team against North Valleys. Then the 6-foot freshman scored on a layup with 58 seconds remaining to close out a 31-30 victory in the Tigers’ season home opener.
Douglas (1-1 league, 1-4 overall) used a 10-2 run through the fourth quarter to rally from a seven-point deficit and win the Northern 4A cross-over contest at Randy Green Court.
Smalley had nine points — including two clutch field goals in the fourth quarter — in addition to 14 rebounds and eight steals to lead the Tigers past North Valleys (1-1, 3-3).
Smalley’s jumper made it 28-27 with 3:33 to go and then she converted that layup off an assist from fellow freshman Taylynn Kizer to give the Tigers their first lead since the first quarter.
The go-ahead basket was set up moments before when Smalley tied up the ball with the possession arrow pointing in the Tigers’ direction. Smalley had a takeaway with 18 seconds left and Alexa Moss came up with a steal as time expired to close out the contest.
Harmony Laney brought the Tigers back to 30-29 when she converted a jumper with 2:25 showing on the clock.
Kizer finished with eight points, five steals and two assists while Hailey Hughes contributed six points and eight rebounds for the Tigers. Moss also scored five points, including a breakaway layup assisted by Smalley that made it 28-25 early in the final quarter.
North Valleys scored 11 unanswered points during a seven-minute span bridging the first and second quarters to take a 16-13 halftime lead. Then the Panthers scored eight unanswered points over the 1:40 of the third quarter to take a 28-21 lead. Jada Casper sank a 3-pointer, assisted by Kaylin Talonen, to ignite the run.
Talonen, a sophomore guard, scored 13 points to lead all scorers for the Panthers.