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Lady Bulldogs finish third at Tharptown Invitational

THARPTOWN - Belgreen's girls held Tharptown scoreless for the final three-and-a-half minutes and made enough free throws down the stretch to pull away for a 47-36 victory over the Lady Wildcats on Friday in the third-place game at the Tharptown Invitational.

Tharptown (4-8) cut Belgreen's lead to 38-36 on a layup by Jessica Wilson with 3:35 remaining, but the Lady Wildcats failed to score again, missing their final seven shots and turning the ball over twice. The Lady Bulldogs (7-8) pushed the lead back to four on a basket by Autumn Bragwell and then went 5-for-12 from the foul line over the final three minutes. Emma Dempsey also had a layup at the 2:20 mark off a nice assist from Brianna Wood as Belgreen closed the game on a 9-0 run.

Playing their third game in as many days, both teams struggled offensively, combining to miss 40 free throws and commit 35 turnovers while shooting just 30 percent from the field. The Lady Bulldogs led 22-16 at the half but then couldn't find the mark in the third quarter, shooting 2-for-16 from the field and 4-for-12 from the line as Tharptown out-scored them 14-8. The Lady Wildcats pulled even at 30-30 when post player Ameliah Dawson grabbed a rebound and then beat the buzzer with a coast-to-coast layup.

Gabbie Moore opened the fourth quarter with a steal and layup to put Belgreen back in front, and Bragwell hit a big three at the 5:30 mark to make it 35-31. Emma Dempsey went 3-for-4 at the foul line on the Lady Bulldogs' next two trips, extending the lead to 38-32. Wilson answered with a pair of free throws and then a layup to get Tharptown back within two, but the Lady Wildcats went dry the rest of the way.

Tharptown finished the game shooting just 27 percent (10-for-37) from the field, including 1-for-9 in the first quarter and 1-for-12 in the fourth. For the game, the Lady Wildcats were 15-for-31 from the foul line and had 22 turnovers.

Belgreen shot 33 percent (14-for-42) from the floor and just 38 percent (15-for-39) from the foul line. They missed 13 of 21 free throws in the fourth quarter but still managed to out-score Tharptown 17-6 to secure the win.

Emma Dempsey finished with 12 points, five rebounds and three blocks to lead the Lady Bulldogs. Jasmine Martin hit a pair of threes and scored eight points, and Katie Dempsey added seven points and seven boards. Moore, Bragwell and Emma Willingham had five points apiece.

Wilson led Tharptown with nine points and three assists. Klaudia Harris had eight points and five rebounds, and Aly Vandiver scored six points. Cati Dawson finished with five points and six rebounds, and Brooke Daily added four points and seven boards.

Belgreen will return to action on Tuesday at Shoals Christian, while Tharptown will host Phillips in a rescheduled area game on Wednesday afternoon at 2 p.m. Belgreen will then host Tharptown next Friday night, the first of two big area showdowns between the two teams in a ten-day span.

In previous action at the Tharptown Invitational:

Mars Hill 58 Belgreen 29

Katie Dempsey went 8-for-10 from the foul line and scored 10 points for Belgreen in Thursday's semifinals, but it wasn't enough as Mars Hill advanced to the championship game.

Gracie Dempsey shot 5-for-6 from the line and added seven points for the Lady Bulldogs, who hit 15-of-18 free throws overall. Ansley Tate and Emma Dempsey each finished with four points, and Brianna Wood and Kaycee Wilson had two apiece.

Carbon Hill 51 Tharptown 44

Brooke Daily scored nine points for the Lady Wildcats in Thursday's other semifinal, but Carbon Hill earned a date with Mars Hill in the championship game

Jessica Wilson and Ameliah Dawson each scored seven points for Tharptown. Klaudia Harris added six, and Linda Bahena finished with five.

Belgreen 48 Brilliant 34

Thirteen different players scored for the Lady Bulldogs in Wednesday's first-round win.

Gabbie Moore and Kaycee Wilson each hit a pair of threes and finished with eight points. Emma Dempsey scored six points, and Katie Dempsey had five. Belgreen led 24-11 at the half and 34-17 after three quarters.

Tharptown 51 Shoals Christian 34

Jessica Wilson led the Lady Wildcats with 12 points in Wednesday's first-round win.

Brooke Daily added 10 points for Tharptown. Linda Bahena and Ameliah Dawson scored seven apiece, and Sierra Robinson had six.

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