Grand Island dared North Platte to beat them from beyond the arc and that's what the Lady Dawgs did on Friday by burying six three-pointers in a low-scoring game to win 47-35."The three-point shot is a dagger," said NPHS coach Mark Woodhead. "It kickstarted our offense."
Grand Island (3-12) led 13-6 at the end of the first quarter with Sarah Splattstoesser scoring the last seven of the quarter.
In the beginning of the second, the Islanders stretched the lead to 16-6 with Kayla Lindell scoring on a putback and McKenzie Fyfe making a free throw.
But Madalynn Doughty made threes on consecutive possessions for the Lady Bulldogs (5-8) and that was when the game started to turn.
Following the two threes by Doughty, Ashten Hernandez scored on a putback and then Kaitlynn Harvey tied it at 16 with a pair of made free throws with 2:40 left in the first half.
Nearly a minute later, Harvey made a jumper just inside the arc and then Sally Hengen hit a three with just under a minute left to close the 15-point run.
Libby Norvell got a basket to bring GI to within 21-18 at halftime.
"That was a huge boost," Woodhead said of his team's run in the second quarter. "We were just fighting back."
Both teams battled in the third quarter but with six seconds left in the quarter, Hengen made a three from the left corner to give North Platte a 33-27 lead heading into the fourth.
In the fourth, Grand Island came within 35-31. But Hernandez scored four straight with a couple of free throws and a layup with two and a half minutes left to stretch the lead once again.
From there, the Bulldogs continued upon a good performance from the free throw line to put the game away.
"I would like to think our defense had something to do with GI not shooting the ball very well," said Woodhead. "We were able to secure the rebound (after most of their misses)."
Grand Island 13 5 9 8 - 35
North Platte 6 15 12 14 - 47
Grand Island (35)-Kirsten Sullivan 4, Sarah Splattstoesser 9, McKenzie Fyfe 4, Libby Norvell 9, Sydney Armstrong 2, Brooke Gangwish 3, Kayla Lindell 4
North Platte (47)-Madalynn Doughty 14, Kaitlynn Harver 10, Sally Hengen 9, Kylie Wroot 4, Ashten Hernandez 10
Free Throws: GI 8-14, NP 13-14; Three Point Goals: GI 1 (Splattstoesser), NP 6 (Hengen 3, Doughty 2, Harvey)