Since losing to SEC Conference leading and top ranked Ypsilanti Chelsea has rattled off 3 straight wins including tonight’s 55-51 double overtime thriller. Chelsea started slow and was getting the inside game to work but the shots just weren’t falling for them early on. They played their usual tough style of defense which kept the game close. Jackson took a 1 point lead into the half.
In the third Jackson took a bit of control taking advantage of miscues and hitting several 3 point shots. But Chelsea kept it close and kept clawing back, refusing to never give up to the Class A Vikings. Jackson would lead the game for most of the night but never by more than 5 points at a time.
With 3 and a half minutes to go Chelsea’s Anna Regis used her soft touch to sink two free throws and tie up the game. But Jackson again took a slight lead. With half a minute left to go in the game, Chelsea took a 1 point lead but Jackson was able to tie it making 1 free throw sending the game into overtime tied at 43.
Jackson won the tip in overtime and both teams battled back and forth sending the game into a second overtime. With Jackson up by 1 and only 30 seconds left, sophomore Brianna Hay took a long shot from beyond the arc to the left of the net and swished it in for 3 giving the Bulldogs the lead. On the ensuing inbounds play Sophomore Helena Schultz was able to steal the ball and The Bulldogs were fouled. Sophomore Maddy Vasquez and senior Nicole Bareis hit clutch free throws to send the Bulldogs back home with a hard fought victory.
“We made a couple plays at the end of the game, Bri’s 3 was huge in the corner, and we finally hit a couple free throws to finish it up,” Chelsea head coach Todd Blomquist stated after the game as he stood amongst all the proud friends and families of the Chelsea players. “We started a bit rough, just didn’t have a lot of focus, but finished strong.”
When Brianna Hay hit that clutch three with very little time left, it was not a designed play. “I just got the ball and saw the open shot and took it,” the soft spoken Hay said. “I’m just happy we won. After I hit it I was so excited.”
Hay led the team in points with 11, including 3 three point shots. Katelyn McKinley and Ann Regis both finished with 9 while Helena Schultz had 8. Jesse Jacobusse led the team with 8 assist while Maddy Vasquez, Nicole Bareis, and Madeline Kennedy each pulled down 6 rebounds apiece.
The Bulldogs will rest up for Friday’s game as they travel to Lincoln to take on the Railspiltters.