She was all smiles standing outside the locker room after a victory over the hosting Elida Bulldogs.
You would be too if you just hit a long 3-pointer for the win.
Games aren’t often decided by one shot or one play, but Tuesday night Wapakoneta senior Nicole Brown’s last second 3-pointer won the game, 47-46.
“I was a little freaked out, but I was praying to God and thanking my teammates for a good screen and a good pass and when it when in, I was excited,” Brown said.
With about five seconds left in the game, the Wapakoneta girls basketball team found themselves trailing by two points to the Elida Bulldogs, 46-44.
With an inbound play under the basket, the Redskins had one last chance to either tie or win the game.
Coming off a screen from the right side of the basket, Brown looped toward the arc and gathered the pass about five feet behind the arc and fired.
And as the story goes, it rattled home.
“Yeah, I was far away, but it was all good,” Brown said. “Plus the hand in my face kind of freaked me out. But it all worked out.”
Wapakoneta varsity coach Rusty Allen was obviously excited for his senior guard.
“Nicole got a little further out than what we wanted, but it’s someone that we want shooting that last shot, and I didn’t have a problem with her taking that shot,” Allen said. “For a girl that takes as many shots as she did over the summer, I didn’t have a problem.”
Wapakoneta entered halftime boasting a 30-26 lead, but into the third quarter, found itself trailing by eight points, 38-30.
“This is like game four for us to come out and not be ready in the third quarter,” Allen said. “Tuesday night against Allen East, we had eight turnovers in 12 possessions. So we kind of had a little different approach coming into halftime tonight.”
Nicole Brown led the Redskins in scoring, netting 12 points, including three shots from treyland.
“I was just really excited, I didn’t know what to do,” Brown said.
The Redskins struggled to contain Elida’s leading scorer and leading rebound O’sha Owens, as she was able to net 24 points in the game, and the majority in the first half.
But fortunately for the ’Skins, Owens fouled out with about two minutes remaining in the game, and was forced to watch the conclusion of the game from the sidelines.
Elida’s co-coach Chrissy Billiter said she was impressed and excited how their young team played tonight, especially the play of Owens.
“She is the senior leader, she’s been here for four years and knows what it’s all about,” Billiter said. “These girls are not used to being in this type of situation. But, we’ll be alright.”
Billiter said the way the game ended was disappointing, but said that if they were to give the Redskins a shot at the end of the game, one from five feet behind the arc isn’t the worst shot to give up.
“Brown is a heck of a shooter. She’s really got talent from deep, and give credit to her,” Billiter said. “She made a great shot.”
Annie Henderson and Erin Schnell both gave Wapakoneta double digits in the score book, netting 11 points and 10 points, respectively.
Wapakoneta is now 4-3 (2-0 WBL) on the season. The Redskins play next Thursday as they host a tough Bath Wildkittens team.
Elida falls to 4-2 (1-1 WBL), and travels to Coldwater on Tuesday.