Etowah (9-7, 2-4) led 31-22 at the half, only to see Woodstock (3-14, 0-6) rally in the third with 17 unanswered points to take a 39-31 lead with less than 2 minutes left in the period. Zach Case scored seven straight points during that stretch, while Jalen Hannah, Dillon Morgan, Chris Mowery and Alex Trammell also made key shots.
But just as quickly as it could take the lead, Woodstock saw it evaporate.
With 1:40 left in the third, Jack Shaughnessy hit a 3-pointer to cut Woodstock’s lead to five. He soon made two more baskets, including another 3 to knot the score at 39-all at the end of the third.
Etowah’s scoring streak continued. Shaughnessy made another 3 to open the fourth quarter and added another after a Destin Porche 3-pointer pushed the Eagles’ lead to 47-39.
Woodstock had yet to score in the period.
The Wolverines finally ended their drought on a 3-pointer by Preston Hurter with 2:46 to play, and then resorted to fouling to get possession of the ball after that.
The Eagles, however, were as good at the free-throw line as they were from beyond the arc. They went 5-for-6 in the fourth quarter, with Shaughnessy 10-for-12 in the game.
Shaughnessy finished with a team-best 30 points, including six 3-pointers. Porche finished with 21 points, including six 3s of his own.
Etowah coach Don Hurlburt said he didn’t know what happened with his team in the third quarter, but he was glad it didn’t last any longer than it did.
“We talked about, at halftime, coming out and trying to put the game away in the third quarter,” he said. “But you know, it’s an Etowah-Woodstock game, so you kind of throw all the strategies out the window. They did a good job. They hit a few shots at the beginning of the third quarter and we were a little flat. I told the kids, in their house, if you allow them to hang around, then, all of sudden, they will think they can win the game.”
Hurlburt credited Shaughnessy for getting the team going, and Porche for pitching in. The coach said those to players are key to the Eagles’ success.
“(Shaughnessy) and Porche make my job easier,” Hurlburt said. “Jack got us going, and Destin got us going and hit a couple of shots. It was a good win for us. It was a region game, a county game and our neighborhood rival. The kids were real focused.”
Case finished with 12 points for Woodstock before fouling out in the final minute of the game. Mowery scored seven points and Hannah finished with nine.
Etowah will play at Cherokee on Friday, while Woodstock will travel to Milton.
Etowah 55, Woodstock 49: Tori Janos scored 25 points and the Lady Eagles held on for the Region 5AAAAAA victory by making their free throws down the stretch.
Woodstock (8-8, 3-3) led 14-8 after the first quarter and 26-18 at the half, but it found itself trailing after a slow third quarter.
Etowah (7-9, 4-2) outscored its Towne Lake rival 21-11 in the third to jump ahead 39-37 entering the final quarter of play.
Woodstock closed the gap to as few as seven points — 51-44 — when Taylor Reed make a 3-pointer, but it couldn’t get any closer. The Lady Wolverines began fouling with less than 2 minutes to play and Etowah inched maintain distance by making its shots.
Jessica Alexander and Kennedy Montgomery each scored 13 points for Woodstock, while Reed and Ashton Sutton finished with eight each.
Janos, who scored 18 of her team-leading points in the second half, including 11 in the fourth quarter, made six 3-pointers in the game. Also scoring for Etowah were Taylor Kimber and Jenni Karpowich, who each finished with eight points.