FOREST CITY | As the clock ran out, senior Hannah Anderson launched a shot from half court. But the power would be too much as the ball bounced off the backboard, to the front of the rim and off.
“Oh!” The crowd said in that almost-had-it tone.
Forest City would go to overtime with Bishop Garrigan at 38-38.
But head coach Dusty Meyn had called a timeout before the end of regulation, so the Indians had one more shot.
Literally. With 1.5 seconds on the clock, Anderson gave the ball to senior Brea Dillavou at half court. Dillavou hurled it at the basket, but the ball would stray wide right.
Now, the game was in overtime.
“The official heard me yell timeout and he was running the other way,” Meyn said. “I thought we should’ve had three seconds, they gave us 1.5 seconds, either way the play we had designed, it was there ... Great officials, glad they had it worked out. You never know, I’ve seen those shots go in.”
It’s those small details that count, which helped the Forest City win the game.
The Indians played the defense that had worked in the third quarter, where they held the Golden Bears to just one shot. This time, the Golden Bears would go scoreless in those final four minutes, and the Anderson-Dillavou duo would take rack up seven points from the line for a 45-38 victory.
Anderson completed her perfect free-throw shooting percentage on the night, going 2-for-2 in overtime for a 4-for-4 performance. Dillavou made all five opportunities in overtime after missing two in regulation.
“Those are free shots and obviously they came up big at the end of the game,” Anderson said. “That’s usually what’s going to put you on top whether you’re going to win or lose in tight games.”
Anderson and junior Kelsey Koch tied as the top-scorers of the night with 11 points each, but Dillavou completed a double-double performance with 10 points and 13 total rebounds, nine defensive.
“Being down in the post it’s just one of the jobs you’ve got to do,” Dillavou said.
The Indians lost two conference games to North Union and West Hancock in the first half of the season, but the break provided opportunity for adjustment.
“I was watching UNI basketball and Ben Jacobson said a quote last year that stuck with me,” Meyn said. “‘If you’re not spending half your practice on defense, why do you expect to play good defense?’ So we’ve kind of revamped our practices. We really broke defensively down each section of the game and drilled that and drilled that and it showed tonight.”
The practice helped, but Meyn wasn’t sure he’d get to see the improvement. Anderson and Dillavou had the stomach flu the day before the Garrigan game.
“Came in to shoot around this morning and I was not very good,” Anderson said. “I had no energy.”
Which is why a game ending in regulation would’ve been ideal, neither knew if they had the energy to play for four more minutes. But both failed to make the half-court shot, and would find the inner strength to push for that overtime victory, 45-38.
“It’s very important because if we would’ve gotten a better shot we wouldn’t have had to play four more minutes, that helped me and Brea a lot being sick,” Anderson said. “But we’ve worked this hard so four more minutes of defense and we should be ok.”