Is there a more exciting way to open up Central Ozark Conference play than with an overtime road win?
Webb City and Joplin were tied at 40 by the end of regulation, with the Cardinals striking first in the extra four minutes of play on a corner 3-pointer from Kenzie Robbins.
Joplin cut the lead to 43-42 after Ella Hafer earned a steal for a fast-break score the other way with 2:33 to play.
The score remained as such until the final five seconds of overtime when Robbins missed the front end of a one-and-one,
only for Ripley Shanks to grab the offensive rebound for a putback score to give the Cardinals a 45-42 lead with 3.8 seconds left. The Eagles never got a clean look at a game-tying shot, with the win sending Webb City above the .500 mark with a 6-5, 1-0 COC record. Joplin falls to 6-7, 0-1 COC.
“Every win in the COC is a big win, especially on the road,” Webb City coach Lance Robbins said. “I was proud of our kids for having the toughness to finish things out in overtime. That being said, Coach (Luke) Floyd has done a good job with the Joplin girls. They competed their tails off and did a great job tonight.
“We were just able to make some plays at the end of the game—Ripley with that huge offensive rebound for us that kind of sealed the deal. It was good to see that from a senior, being a leader. … It’s a huge play. Ripley understands what her role is on the team. She is a rebounder for us, she finishes around the basket and is a good defender. … I think you could tell our girls were ecstatic for her to grab that and put it back. It’s a good confidence builder going forward.”
Kenzie Robbins led Webb City with 16 points on 5-of-16 shooting, including four 3-pointers. She added five rebounds, one assist and two steals. Eleven of her points came in the fourth quarter and overtime periods.
“I thought she struggled a little early, which everyone was struggling shooting the ball for us early, but we talked to her at halftime about staying confident in her shot and to keep shooting it because it will fall,” Coach Robbins said. “She just wants to win. She is competitive and made some winning plays and shots towards the end.”
Sami Mancini finished with a double-double, scoring 10 points and grabbing 11 rebounds. She added three assists and three blocks. Shanks finished with nine points and four rebounds.
Emma Floyd led Joplin with a game-high 19 points and 13 rebounds to also finish with a double-double, adding two steals, while Hafer closed with nine points, 10 rebounds and a steal.
“I liked the effort and the way we battled,” Joplin coach Luke Floyd said after the loss. “I liked our chances when we sent it to overtime. Unfortunately, this is part of the learning process. We have to learn how to win games like this because we haven’t been in games like this. … There are moments that we have to continue to learn from and hopefully we don’t make those same mistakes a second time going forward.”
The largest lead of the first half between the Eagles and Cardinals was five points, which both teams held at one point.
Joplin started the game with a 3-pointer from Brooke Nice before Scarlett Floyd found room inside off the assist from Emma Floyd to make the score 5-0.
Webb City answered back with a 3-pointer from Kate Brownfield and inside bucket by Shanks off the assists from Mancinci to tie the game.
Webb City built a 15-10 lead thanks to a 6-0 run to start the second quarter. Mancini scored inside off an inbounds pass under her own basket before Mia Robbins and Austyn Mickey added buckets to fill the run out.
Joplin answered with the next six points to regain the lead. Ashley Phillips grabbed an offensive rebound for a putback bucket before Nice and Emma Floyd each knocked down a pair of shots at the charity stripe to give the Eagles a 16-15 advantage with 1:56 left in the first half.
The Cardinals ultimately took a 20-18 lead into the intermission.
Kenzie Robbins buried a 3-pointer from the corner in the third quarter to give Webb City another five-point lead, 27-22, at the 5:45 mark, but Joplin again responded with an inside basket from Emma Floyd, a 3-ball from Hafer at top of the key and two free throws from Izzy Yust to regain the lead.
Joplin held a 33-30 lead heading into the fourth quarter before Kenzie Robbins splashed a 3-pointer from the wing at the seven-minute mark to tie the game.
An inside score from Mancini and a baseline drive by Kenzie Robbins pushed the Cardinals in front 37-35 with four minutes to play.
Kenzie Robbins converted from the corner on the perimeter off the assist from Mancini to give Webb City a 40-36 lead near the three-minute mark before Hafer scored on the drive and Emma Floyd grabbed an offensive rebound for a put back to tie the game at 40s with a minute to play in regulation.
Webb city hosts Ozark at 7:30 p.m. in COC play on Thursday, while Joplin hosts conference foe Branson with a 6 p.m. tip scheduled on Friday.
“Webb City is a very well-coached team and they play hard,” Coach Floyd added. “It was just a battle. Everyone is familiar with each other and what they do in these conference games. … Going forward in conference games, we have a tight, overtime game under our belt. Hopefully, we can look back on our mistakes, correct them and not repeat them.”