On the aesthetically-pleasing, can’t-wait-to-review-the-film scale, Bellarmine Prep girls basketball coach did not hesitate to grade his team’s 2013 West Central District debut performance.
“That was a zero,” Meines said.
But on a satisfaction scale?
“That was a 100,” he said.
It’s not how – but how many. And trailing much of the game, the host Lions found an unlikely spark to rally for 41-39 overtime victory over Rogers in Tacoma.
Bellarmine Prep (14-7), the Narrows 4A runner-up, moves on to face second-ranked Mount Rainier (21-1) in the Class 4A district quarterfinals at Stadium High School on Friday night.
The frantic exchanges in the final 15.3 seconds sure made up for a game that was riddled with ball-handling errors by the Lions (17 first-half turnovers without injured point guard Jasmyne Holmes), and missed free throws (4-for-13 in the fourth quarter and overtime) and lay-ins by the Rams.
After Ionna Price’s free throw gave Bellarmine Prep a 39-37 lead, the Lions pressured fullcourt – and Rogers (12-9) threw over the top of the defense. The ball landed in the arms of senior post player Kalani Ulufale for an easy lay-in to tie the game.
Bellarmine Prep inbounded quickly, got the ball to ninth grader Jayana Ervin near midcourt. She did the rest, squeezing by a defender near the free throw line, and putting the ball in her left hand as she curled to the left, making the game-winning lay-in with one second to go.
Ervin tallied six of her eight points in overtime.
Midway through the third quarter, Rogers held a 27-19 lead, but went the next 9:23 without a field goal to let the Lions back in it.