ST. CLAIRSVILLE - Anna DeFilippo only scored one basket during the fourth quarter of St. Clairsville's girls' basketball tilt against Harrison Central on Thursday night.
But it came at a most opportune moment.
The sophomore's driving layup with 10.8 seconds left lifted the Red Devils to a thrilling 49-48 victory against the Huskies in a key OVAC and Buckeye 8 contest on John Jenkins Court that left both squads with 8-4 marks.
''Anna did a great job getting to the basket,'' St. Clairsville head coach Alicia Freeman said. ''She does that a lot.''
But even after DeFilippo's bucket gave St. C. the lead, Harrison Central still had one more chance to tie or win the game.
Following a Huskies time out, Shianne Nameth inbounded the ball to Kara Dunfee. Dunfee raced upcourt passed the midcourt stripe, drove past the 3-point line and encountered a plethora of Red Devils defenders. She put up a shot, which missed.
Harrison Central and St. Clairsville hands went up in the air to grab the rebound and it went out of bounds, with officials ruling it Red Devils ball with 0.9 left.
Following a time out, St. Clairsville was able to inbound the ball and secure the victory.
''We were trying to get the ball down the court and get an open-court situation for Kara to either drive or kick it out,'' Harrison Central head coach Nick Yourkovich explained.
''She drove into a bit of traffic and got tangled up and didn't necessarily get off the shot we wanted.
''On the other end, they just made one more play than we did.''
The Huskies struggled most of the final period to grab the lead, finally doing so at 44-43 when Katie Ellzy canned a pair of free throws with 1:35 left.
But, as they had done most of the night, St. Clairsville was able to benefit from dribble penetration. This time, Brigee Mick was the beneficiary, her driving layup giving the Red Devils the lead back at 45-44.
Harrison Central regained the advantage at 46-45 with 42 ticks left when Ellzy scored off a nifty pass from Paige Richards.
Mick inbounded the ball for St. C. and eventually the ball made it's way to Lauren Figura. With 27.6 seconds left Figura was fouled by Ellzy. It was Ellzy's fifth foul, sending her to the bench for the night.
Figura made both free throws giving the Red Devils the lead again, 47-46.
On Harrison Central's ensuing possession, Richards was fouled by Carlee Gillespie, her fifth. Richards, too made both free throws and the Huskies regained the lead, 48-47.
Freeman called time out with 24.1 setting up what would be DeFilippo's winning shot.
''We said we wanted to be patient with the ball and that we had time on the clock,'' Freeman said.
Freeman also told her players that if they had an opportunity to drive the green light was there. DeFilippo saw an opening and pounced.
DeFilippo finished with 10 points. Figura paced the Red Devils with 13, while Alexis St. Clair had 12.
Ellzy, who scored 27 during the last meeting between the two teams, had a team-high 18. Richards finished with 10.
''Going into the fourth quarter we couldn't hit anything,'' Freeman said. ''Then, we came back and they were down. Then, they came back and we were down.
''It was an all-around great game.''
HARRISON CENTRAL (48) - Ledger 1 2-2 5; Yoho 0 0-0 0; Richards 3 4-4 10; Nameth 2 1-2 5; Dunfee 3 3-4 9; Keesey 0 1-2 1; Orr 0 0-0 0; Ellzy 6 6-6 18. Totals 15 17-20 48. ST. CLAIRSVILLE (49) - Mick 1 2-2 4; Gillespie 3 2-2 8; DeFilippo 3 4-6 10; St. Clair 6 0-1 12; Cenkus 1 0-0 2; Figura 4 5-8 13. Totals 18 13-19 49.
3-Point Goal: Ledger.
Thorp can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org