Coming up Biggs
UNION MILLS — It was one of those shots that might’ve gotten Faith Biggs some grief from South Central coach Wes Bucher if it hadn’t gone in.
“I had confidence in it,” the Satellites junior said of the dagger corner 3 in double overtime that helped push S.C. to a 54-47 Porter County Conference win over stubborn Kouts on Thursday. “I’d already made some 3s, so just take it.”
When Biggs swished it, Bucher just turned to his assistants with an ‘oh well’ shrug and smiled. In a game that wasn’t supposed to be this tough, he wasn’t going to complain.
“I yelled, just be patient, throw the ball back out,” he said. “Sometimes, the basketball IQs aren’t quite where I want them to be, but we have a lot of talented athletes, who when they catch fire, can make really good plays. Faith had a really gritty performance. She has the ability to do that. When she gets hot, she can stay hot for a long time. She was very confident toward the end of the game. We need people like that. At the end of the day, a win’s a win, and Faith was a big part of that.”
She sure was. Biggs scored 21 points, including seven in the second OT. Her free throws broke a 46-all tie at 2:41 and her 3 after two Kouts misses at the line gave the hosts an insurmountable lead.
“In the locker room (at halftime), we talked, we’re better than this, we’re stooping down to their level,” Biggs said. “We had to calm down and come back up to our level, and we knew we had it. It wasn’t our best game, but we came back and won.”
S.C. (5-2, 1-0) labored against Kouts’ zone in the first half to the tune of 12 points, that after jumping to a quick 7-0 lead, and trailed by 10 at the break.
“You’ve got to give Kouts credit,” Bucher said. “They played hard. They were patient with ball in their hands. They weren’t bothered by our 1-3-1, which is our primary defense. Our goal was to use the middle of their court against their 1-2-2, but we threw a lot of soft passes in the first half. We weren’t getting the ball where we needed to get it. They’re tall. The 3-2, the way they run it, it’s tough to get the ball in the middle. We knew we were going to have to hit some outside shots. We do have the shooters. Our mentality just needed to switch. We started out strong and it seemed it left the building for a little while.”
It came back in the third when Biggs caught fire, popping three 3s. Abbie Tomblin had another during an 11-0 run that turned a 26-17 deficit into a 28-26 lead.
“The girls did everything we asked them to do to start this game,” Kouts coach Ron Kobza said. “To go into halftime with that type of lead, the defensive performance we put on, it was simply fantastic. We told them we had to maintain, but they came out on fire and it changed the momentum.”
Kouts (6-3, 1-1) steadied itself amidst another S.C. drought, pushing in front by eight inside the four-minute mark before another Satellites surge. After Delanie Gale’s and-one off a steal and Biggs’ own pick and score, Tomblin buried a trey for a 38-all tie at 1:14.
“With me, Amber (Wolf) and Delaney getting steals, that really helped us on the offensive side,” said Biggs, who totaled six steals.
South Central had a chance to win in the first OT, but Wolf missed two foul shots in a tie game with 4.6 left, and the game chugged on for another four minutes.
“I was really proud of the way we finished the game, not the way we started the game by any means,” Bucher said. “I said, look, we can win this game if we choose to, and we took over. That was exciting.”
Tomblin matched Biggs’ output from the arc in scoring 16, while Morgan Kobza led Kouts with 18.
“We’re not the most skilled team, but the girls are working hard and if they continue to do that, we can compete in this conference,” Kobza said. “We showed everybody that if we can hang with South Central, we’re going to be all right.”
South Central 54, Kouts 47, 2 OT
Faith Biggs and Abbie Tomblin each made four 3s for the Satellites.