Demarco Moore, Sports Writer
Coffee County Central High School squandered an 11-point lead to Ringgold on Thursday night, but held off the Lady Tigers for a 70-65 overtime win at the Whitwell Christmas Tournament at Whitwell High School.
Coffee County will face the winner of Sequatchie County and Fairview Christian in Friday’s semifinal game.
The Lady Raiders (11-1 overall) stood toe-to-toe with Ringgold, which had advanced to the second round of last season’s Georgia state basketball tournament.
Ringgold prevented the Lady Raiders from running away with the game twice, the first time coming in the first half when Coffee County jumped out to an 18-6 lead after the first quarter. The Lady Tigers pulled to within 27-23 at halftime before the Lady Raiders carried another double-digit lead (48-37) into the fourth quarter.
However, Rachel Akers scored 10 of Ringgold’s 23 fourth-quarter points, helping the Lady Tigers force overtime after limiting Coffee County offensively.
Junior Abby Morgan scored as many points (five) as Ringgold did as a team in overtime, helping the Lady Raiders hold on for their 11th win of the season.
Morgan was one of three Lady Raiders to finish in double figures. Morgan finished with 19 points, freshman Bella Vinson led the team with 20 points and junior Jacey Vaughn scored 18, going 8-for-12 from the free-throw line.
Coffee County also knocked down a total of seven 3-pointers.
NEXT GAME: versus Sequatchie County/ Fairview Christian on Friday, Dec. 29 (3 p.m.)
Reach Demarco Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org, and follow him on Twitter @iam__demo