KNOXVILLE — In a season of close misses, the Lady Highlanders would not be denied here Wednesday.
Five days after defeating Austin-East by 19 points at home, and two days before facing the Roadrunners in an elimination game on a neutral floor, Scott High made a statement at A-E’s place on Wednesday, storming back in the fourth quarter to complete a regular season sweep with a 53-48 win.
After a nip-and-tuck first half, the Lady Highlanders found themselves down six points, 38-32, as the final period began. The deficit came thanks to a third quarter that saw Scott score just seven points.
But the fourth quarter was all about Scott High. And it was all about Callie Carson.
The Lady Highlanders began the final period with a 10-0 run to surge back from six down to four up. Then they kept it going. Carson, who had a game-high 23 points, scored 11 in the fourth quarter, hitting a crucial 3-pointer and going 6 of 6 from the free throw line.
The foul line turned into a major storyline as the fourth quarter progressed. Led by Carson’s effort, the Lady Highlanders were 10 of 14 from there in the final period.
Austin-East, by contrast, was 0 of 5 from the line in the fourth, and missed the front-end of a one-and-one opportunity.
For the game, Scott High was 14 of 22 from the line, hitting at a 64 percent pace. Austin-East was just 3 of 12, for 25 percent. That was the difference in the game, allowing the Lady Highlanders to escape with the victory despite having two fewer field goals than the Roadrunners.
The first quarter saw Austin-East’s Maggie Goins score nine points, which helped A-E stay within one point after Carson and Julia Butts each knocked down 3-point shots for Scott High.
The second quarter was played evenly, as five different Lady Highlanders got into the scoring column and off-set a six-point effort by A-E’s Ahya Moreno.
The third quarter was when things got dicey. Carson knocked down a 3-pointer and scored five of her 23 in the third, but the only other points for the Lady Highlanders came on a bucket by Tara Sellers.
Austin-East, meanwhile, got seven points from Goins in the third quarter, while two other players knocked down 3-pointers, and the Roadrunners went ahead by six points as the fourth quarter began.
Goins was held scoreless in the final period, however, and Carson took over the game on the Lady Highlanders’ end. Additionally, Lyndsey Summers had five of her 10 in the fourth quarter.
Scott High will face Austin-East in the first round of the District 4-AA tournament at Fulton High School on Friday. Tipoff is slated for 6 p.m.
SCOTT (53): Carson 23, Summers 10, Butts 10, Sellers 6, Woodward 3, Smith 1.
AUSTIN-EAST (48): Goins 16, Moreno 10, Anderson 6, Turner 5, Muckelvene 4, Watkins 3, Drew 1.