“I was scared,” Buie said. “I knew if I didn’t make this my team was going to get me after the game. I am still shocked.”
Talladega’s Jade Reynolds hit a pair of free throws to make it 57-55 with nine seconds left in double overtime. Kaylen Starks had an opportunity to tie the game, but she missed. Buie connected on a putback at the buzzer. The officiating crew had two different calls to end the game. After huddling up for a few seconds they determined that the basket was good and that she was fouled while shooting.
Buie missed both of her previous attempts in the overtime period, but this time with the lane clear and with no time left on the clock she came up clutch by draining the free throw.
“She has improved so much on her free throws,” Shelby County head coach Ashley Phillips said. “Early on she didn’t make many, but she has worked hard. To be honest with you, she is probably the most improved player on our team. She is a senior and that is what seniors do: get better as the year goes on.”
Talladega trailed for almost the entire game, but they were able to keep the game within six points all evening. With 2:26 left Alexus Morgan hit a pair of free throws to give Talladega their first lead of the game 38-37. On the next trip down the court, Morgan hit a layup to increase the lead to three points, 40-37 with a 1:48 left in the regulation.
Hallie Brown scored 21 points, including the last five points for Shelby County. Her layup cut the lead down to 40-39 with 32 seconds left.
Shameshia Truss increased Talladega‘s lead back to three points with a pair of free throws.
The Lady Wildcats put the ball into their senior’s hands and she delivered. After a timeout, Brown banked in a 3-pointer from the top of the key that sent the game into the first overtime.
Buie scored four of her 18 points in the first overtime. Her layup off a Starks pick gave Shelby County 48-46 with a minute left in overtime.
DJ Warmack refused to let Talladega go down. Warmack hit a layup with 21 seconds left to tie the game at 48-48.
Starks was held in check for most of the game, but she came to life in the second overtime. The junior scored four of her nine points in the period.
“Usually, your better players show up at primetime,” Phillips said. “That was nice.”
Shelby County takes on Sylacauga in the Area 8 championship game at 3 p.m. on Saturday.