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When her number was called against her team's biggest rival in the waning moments of overtime, Northview junior Kendall McCoy tried to remain calm.
McCoy then proceeded to drain a shot off the backboard from 11 feet out for the game-winning bucket with 2.8 seconds left in overtime. Northview made the last play in an intense atmosphere at the Wildcats' packed gym in a thrilling 52-50 win over the Cougars.
“We had a special play called,” McCoy said. “I tried to keep my composure. I knew I had time on the clock and I was confident in the shot. It just came. It was amazing. I didn't really mean to [bank it], it just happened that way.”
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Northview earned a sweep of its rival by rallying from a four-point deficit after three quarters.
The Wildcats led by two in the waning moments of regulation when Southview's Taryn Smith drove the lane and tied it with three seconds left to send it to OT.
Northview's Maddie Fries drained a 3-pointer early in overtime to give her team a 50-48 lead.
Southview's Sarah Klepzig then came up with a steal and scored in the paint to tie it.
Following McCoy's dramatic jumper from above the block, Kendall Jessing stole the long inbound pass to seal the win.
“Never doubt the heart of a Sylvania kid,” Northview coach Brittaney Cymbolin said. “Statistics go out the window for this game. It's a horse race and all bets are off. I've never seen so much heart from both teams. They gave everything they had. I just thank goodness we came out on top.”
McCoy led Northview with 13 points. Maddie Cole and Katie Cole each finished with nine points. Jessing had nine rebounds.
Westphal tallied a double-double for Southview. She scored a team-high 13 points and grabbed 11 rebounds. Stanley finished with 12 points for the Cougars.
“I'm really proud of our kids,” Southview coach Tim Nottke said. “They went out there and played with a lot of heart. That's all we can ask. Northview made a play at the end. We battled.”
Northview (16-6 overall, 11-3 NLL) had defeated Southview 43-37 on the Cougars' home court on Dec. 20. The Cougars fell to 15-7 and 9-5 in league play.
Southview trailed 30-27 at the half. But the Cougars went on a 13-2 run to take a 40-36 lead heading into the fourth quarter. Westphal tallied six points, grabbed four rebounds, and had two steals to spark the surge.
But Northview charged back as Fries hit a 3 to cut it to a one-point game. Jessing then had a key put-back with 4:06 left for the Wildcats. Jessing came up with a steal and scored to tie it at 45 with 1:23 remaining.
Isabelle Austin converted two free throws to put Northview back up by two with 23 seconds left in the fourth quarter. But Stanley drove the lane and scored with three seconds left.
“The kids are disappointed because they spent the last five days just zeroed in on what we had to do,” Nottke said. “They played with heart and passion. It's unfortunate we didn't get it done. Hopefully we cross paths again.”
McCoy was mobbed by Northview's student section after the game.
“This is such a great cross-town rivalry,” she said. “We have all of our friends are here. We pulled through. There are so many amazing players on this court.”
Cymbolin said the play was designed to go to McCoy.
“All her teammates rallied around her and told her she could do it. They trusted her, and she hit it,” Cymbolin said.
Southview finished with a 28-27 edge on the boards. Northview forced 21 turnovers and Southview created 19.
“Coming off a horrendous loss to Notre Dame [68-33 on Saturday], and getting a big win tonight gives us a positive step going into the postseason,” Cymbolin said.