In 45 seconds Tuesday, Evans High’s Allysha McFarland snapped her team’s five-game losing streak, swept a Columbia County rival for the season, orchestrated an unlikely comeback victory and gave her struggling team renewed hope.
Down 25-35 to Greenbrier (4-16, 0-6) as the fourth period started, McFarland scored 11 points, with seven coming in the final minute of the game, to lead Evans to a 42-39 win.
With 45 seconds left on the clock, she nailed a jump shot to close the gap to two points. Twenty-five seconds later, she went two-for-two at the free-throw line to tie the game at 39 all.
Then, with just nine seconds left, McFarland nailed a jumper from 3-point range to cap the Lady Knights (10-11, 2-4) Region 2-AAAA win and give them the lead for the first time.
“Allysha really put the team on her back in those final seconds,” said Evans girls head basketball coach Ryan Morningstar.
Greenbrier took the early advantage, and by the end of the half had built up an 11-point lead.
In the third, the teams kept pace with each other, until McFarland started to catch fire in the fourth.
“It would have been easy for them (Lady Knights) to just hang their heads, and they had started to do that, pointing fingers at each other for mistakes,” Morningstar said. “But to win like this, in those last seconds, showed them a lot, I think. It showed them playing hard, not giving up, yields good things.”
The Evans boys won as well in a hard fought 49-45 win over the Wolfpack.
The game featured seven lead changes in the first half, but Evans (13-7, 5-1) entered the second half ahead 22-20 and never again lost the lead.
Evans’ Myles McDavid put up 18 points in the game, including three first-half 3-pointers.
Like the girls, the game produced a season sweep of the Wolfpack (8-12, 2-4), who extended their losing streak to four.