SILVER SPRING — It was never a dull minute Friday night in the varsity girls basketball matchup between the visiting Quince Orchard Cougars and the Springbrook Blue Devils, as the Cougars squeaked by with a three-point margin to win 42-39.
Going by the standings before the game, the Cougars were likely to be favored, as the visitors came in with an 8-10-1 record to the Blue Devils’ 5-13-1.
Once the game was underway, there was no sign of an impending blowout or a certain victor, as every minute the game was under grabs for either squad.
The first quarter proved that both teams were on near-equal footing as they each traded shots and would respond bucket for bucket.
The quarter ended with the score tied at 11 points each and would be a highlight reel for senior Blue Devils forward Mya Thomas, who scored all but one of the points in the first quarter.
Springbrook’s top scorer, Thomas made 19 points in the game; her dominant first quarter performance remained unrivaled by any player on either team.
“Mya is the hardest working player on this team, every day, every practice, every game. She gives 1000 percent, if that’s possible,” said Springbrook head coach Lynette O’Reggio.
The second quarter went the Blue Devils’ way, as they slightly outscored Quince Orchard to go into halftime up by three points. Accuracy woes plagued the Cougars, as they could find the rim but not the basket and only sunk it twice.
“Some of the shots we missed are shots we need to take,” said Quince Orchard head coach Chris Campbell.
A scrappy Cougars squad outscored the Blue Devils in the third quarter, but only by five points. The third quarter also saw the Quince Orchard team shoot more three-pointers than any other quarter, with four out of five shots coming from outside of the perimeter.
It was not easy for the Cougars, as the Blue Devils sought to suffocate the visitors and keep them from making easy layups, even as Quince Orchard players adapted by making three-point shots in abundance.
The entire game was building up to the fourth quarter, where the Cougars sought to keep their lead and the Blue Devils tried to overcome it.
And Springbrook almost overcame, as an eight-point streak in the middle of the quarter brought them within one point of equalizing with Quince Orchard.
However, the Blue Devils never regained the lead, and senior Cougars forward Yekta Kamali and junior Cougars guard Lindsay Michaels drained one three-pointer each to widen the lead, interrupted by a two-point shot by Thomas in between.
After Michaels’ last shot, Thomas responded with four points to bring the game within one point again before going into a time out.
Quince Orchard freshman guard Anaya Badamus was fouled after the time out and made both shots, widening the lead to three points before another time out was called and taking the chances of a Springbrook comeback from close to improbable.
With three seconds left, only a Hail Mary play could save the Blue Devils, but the opportunity was squandered and the Cougars came out the victors.
“They definitely were willing to put their bodies on the line for every loose ball, for every rebound, and I think that’s something we had to adjust to during the game,” said Cougars senior guard Maggie Regan about the scrappy Blue Devils.