Lady Bucs Win Nailbiter Over Chargers, 51-50

Jalisa Sanders Hits Last Second Free Throws To Earn Senior Night Victory

Friday, January 28, 2022 - by Jacob Robinson
Boyd Buchanan's Caiden Johnson takes a shot in the first half of the boys game.
Boyd Buchanan's Caiden Johnson takes a shot in the first half of the boys game.
- photo by Greg Davick

The matchup between cross town foes did not disappoint. The Boyd-Buchanan Buccaneers put on a show in their senior night victories in their games against the Chattanooga Christian Chargers.

The Lady Buccaneers and Charges battled in a classic, 51-50, back-and-forth game. For the boys, Boyd-Buchanan overcame an early deficit to cruise to a 48-27 win.

The girls Boyd-Buchanan squad could not ask for a better start when Macy Balthrop, an injured senior, started the game with a layup, with CCS players stepping aside for her,

That emotional spark carried the Buccaneers to a 15-8 lead. However, the tide began to shift when Lily Brady hit a 3-pointer from the corner as the buzzer sounded.

The Chargers mounted a comeback in the second quarter. The Chargers had multiple second-chance points off offensive rebounds, with most rebounds falling in the hands of Jaydah Rainey. The Chargers dominated the whole quarter: rebounds, free throws, shots attempted, and shots made. Their half-court trap scheme gave the Buccaneers plenty of questions to answer heading into halftime, as the game was tied 22-22.

In the third quarter, the Chargers would gain their first lead of the game after Maddy Zidan’s layup put them up by two, 26-24. The lead would not be secure though as there were four more lead changes throughout the quarter. The Buccaneers would go on a six-point run to take the lead into the fourth quarter, 38-37.

The fourth quarter could not have played out any better for Boyd-Buchanan’s seniors.

CCS would go up after Lily Brady’s 3-pointer found nothing but net. The Chargers would hold the lead until under two minutes. Boyd-Buchanan’s senior captain, Jalisa Sanders, would sink both of her free throws to tie the game. Her teammate Sarah Durham would make a layup giving the Buccaneers a two-point lead. CCS’s Zidan would tie the game seconds later.

Then, chaos ensues.

Boyd-Buchanan’s Sanders would call a timeout on an inbounds play to avoid a five-second inbounding violation. However, the Buccaneers already spent their last timeout. With this, a flagrant foul was issued giving the Chargers an attempt at a free throw and possession. The free throw was made, Chargers were up by one point with 12 seconds remaining.

On the inbound, the Buccaneers managed to knock the ball out of play with 10 seconds remaining. CCS would inbound, again, but the Buccaneer’s defense forced them to a backcourt violation, with eight ticks left on the clock.

Senior captain Sanders would receive the inbound, drive towards the basket from the top of the key, and throw up a last-second layup—but was fouled.

Sanders, with the traveling Chargers student section deafening the entire gym with their yelling, calmly goes through her free throw routine. The first shot goes up and hits nothing but net to put the game in a tie.

Sanders repeats the routine, blocking out the hundreds of eyes, the noise, and the pressure. The shot to give her team the lead rolled off her shooting hand and sliced through the air. Again, nothing but net. She went two for two. Buccaneer lead, 51-50 with three seconds remaining.

The Hail Mary inbound by the Chargers fell into the hands of Boyd-Buchanan, and the team swarmed half court as the buzzer sounded. The perfect ending for senior night.

“These girls find a way to win in these close games, and that is because of senior leadership,” said Lady Buccaneers head coach Tracy Walker. “CCS was gracious enough to let our senior (Macy Balthrop), that got hurt in the first game of the season, to score the first two points. Then, at the other end, my other senior gets her two points to win it for us.”

Boyd Buchanan boys 48, CCS 27: The boys' game did not follow the same narrative. Despite an early eight-point deficit, the Buccaneers would gain the lead as the end of the first-quarter buzzer sounded off a layup by Ryan Lopez, 13-12.

Since that layup, the Buccaneers dished and dimed, shot over, and dunked on the Chargers. CCS would only manage one point in the second quarter. They went scoreless through the first five minutes of the third quarter. Boyd-Buchanan had a 21-point cushion going into the fourth quarter.

The fourth quarter was filled with seniors playing basketball together on the court. Instead of shooting long-range shots, the senior Buccaneers passed the ball with fluidity, draining the clock, and picking up layups and putbacks. The game to a close in the hands of senior guard T.I. Issa as he gave a handshake to his coach. The Buccaneers protected home court, and senior night, 48-27.

CHATTANOOGA CHRISTIAN     11      11     15   13     50
BOYD-BUCHANAN                     15      7      16     13 –    51
CHATTANOOGA CHRISTIAN (26) – Jaydah Rainey 14, Rebekah Davick 14, Zidan 9, Baird 7, Bray 2, Matthews 2, Hatten 2.
BOYD BUCHANAN (53)  Riley Robertson 10, Sarah Durham 10, Reeves 9, Sanders 8, Deloach 7, Winston 5, Balthrop 2.
3-POINT GOALS: Chattanooga Christian 3 (Brady);  Boyd Buchanan 4 (Durham 2, Winston, Robertson).
CHATTANOOGA CHRISTIAN      12    1    6     8 –    27
BOYD-BUCHANAN                                    13   13   14   8 –    48
CHATTANOOGA CHRISTIAN (27)  Parker Graham 13, Irvin 4, Conley 2, Bauldwin 2, Lubbers 2, Groer 2, Huston 1, Patrick 1.
BOYD BUCHANAN (48) – Ryan Lopez 12, Shockley 8, Jones 6, Miller 6, Johnson 5, Moore 4, Wamack 3, Warren 2, Carton 2.
3-POINT GOALS:  Chattanooga Christian 1 (Graham);  Boyd Buchanan 3 (Lopez 2, Wamack).

(Contact Jacob Robinson at


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