FALLS VILLAGE — Brooke Donaghey led No. 5 Shepaug from a 13-point halftime deficit to a cliffhanging 37-35 overtime win over No. 4 Housatonic in a Berkshire League tournament quarterfinal game at Housatonic High School Thursday night.
In an offensive battle of stars and supporting defenders, Housatonic center Sydney Segalla ruled a first half in which she rampaged to the hoop for 12 of her team’s 21 half-time points and most of its rebounds while the Mountaineer defense, in a full-court press for most of the game, held the Spartans to eight points, with six of those on a pair of three-pointers from Donaghey.
“I told them I wanted to cut their lead in half by the end of the third quarter and take our time on offense,” Shepaug coach Karen Puskas said. “I wanted them to double the ball on Segalla.”
It was the right call on defense. The Spartans held Housy to four points in the third period, minimizing Segalla’s touches while holding her to five points for the rest of the game. Still, Shepaug scored just seven points of their own in the quarter
Donaghey, with game-high 20 points, including four threes, got hot in the final quarter for the rest of the catch-up job, including her third trey with six seconds left in regulation for a 30-30 tie.
Heroics cascaded in the four-minute overtime.
Housy’s Josie Marks hit a put-back half-way through the period.
Donaghey was back for the 33-32 Spartan lead with her fourth three-pointer and a pair of foul shots, 35-32.
With eight seconds left, Mountaineer Tori Dodge (10 points) sank a three for another tie, 35-35.
The Spartans got the ball to Donaghey on the inbounds. On a set play, she found Marissa Perachi for the winning layup.
“I just felt it tonight,” said a beaming Donaghey.
“They got hot and we cooled off,” Housatonic coach Steve Dodge said. “Our defense took their feet off the gas.”
Shepaug will face undefeated Thomaston in a tournament semifinal next Tuesday.