Cedar Ridge spoiled “Senior Night” for Chapel Hill on Friday night as the Red Wolves came away with a 36-28 in what also was a celebration for long-time girls basketball coach Sherry Norris, who is in her 40th season with the Tigers.
Carrie Davis, who led Cedar Ridge with 12 points, and Yolanda Simpson, who finished with 10 point, sparked a third-quarter run that the Red Wolves used to take control of the game and defeat Chapel Hill.
Cedar Ridge coach Felton Page said he was happy for his team to get the win, especially being on the road on a night when Chapel Hill was honoring Norris.
“We approached it like we did any other game,” Page said. “We were trying to get a win and we still have a lot to play for this season. We want to get into the playoffs and we have to keep winning.”
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Cedar Ridge (10-9, 4-5 Big 8) got over.500 overall and that’s something Page said he believes his team can build on going down the stretch.
“We’re trying to hang on and we’re going to keep fighting to the end and see what happens,” Page said.
The Tigers (3-17, 1-8) just didn’t have enough offensive punch to keep up, which has been a recurring theme this season. They had no players reach double figures against Cedar Ridge as Anne Crabill led the way with 8 points.
Points came at a premium in the first half as Cedar Ridge managed to build an 8-4 lead at the end of the first quarter. Chapel Hill kept it close in the second, cutting the Red Wolves’ advantage to 13-10 at the intermission after Crabill scored a layup in the final minute.
The third quarter began with a flurry of baskets and Chapel Hill cut the margin to two points on a 3-pointer by Kolby Levesque, the Tigers’ lone senior. But right afterwards, Wardlow responded with a 3 for the Red Wolves to restore their five-point margin to 18-13.
Davis then followed with a steal and a layup to push Cedar Ridge’s lead to seven points. The Red Wolves went on to build a 12-point margin after she hit a jumper from the left baseline to make it 26-14 with three minutes left in the third quarter.
Chapel Hill got to within five points with three minutes left in the game when sophomore Holly Heizer made one of two free throws to make the score 32-27. The Tigers had trailed by 12 points early in the fourth before making their run.
“I thought they did a really good job and they showed a lot of composure,” Norris said.
Chapel Hill has managed only three wins overall this season and the Tigers have only one win in the Big 8. Since beating Northern Vance, Chapel Hill has its last five games.
Chapel Hill still has four game remaining – all on the road – in the regular season, as well as the Big 8 Conference Tournament, which begins in two weeks.
After the game, Norris was recognized at midcourt with her present team as well as players from her past, including numerous members of the 1981 state championship squad. There also was a reception in honor of her 40th season in the school cafeteria where Norris thanked everyone who came to the game.
Norris was noncommittal about her future plans after the season despite speculation that this may be her last as the Tigers’ coach.