AUBURN – Rebounds come easy for Brittni Williams. Free throws, not so much.
But the junior guard calmly sank a pair with 3.5 seconds left to lead the unbeaten Auburn Riverside girls basketball team to a 50-47 victory over Kentridge Friday night.
All she had to do was think about the pregame practice she’d had with coach Derek Pegram, who was trying to help her get out of a slump at the line.
“Use the same form, just hit the shots,” she told herself.
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And she did, even when Kentridge called time out between them.
Williams, who is just 5-foot-6 but has a knack of getting balls off the backboard, grabbed an offensive rebound and was fouled with the score tied at 47.
Auburn Riverside (4-0, 4-0) maintained its share of the SPSL 4A North Division lead with second-ranked Mount Rainier. Kentridge (2-2, 2-2) was coming off an upset victory over No. 8 Kentwood and was looking for its first win over Riverside since the 2003-04 season.
But this game had special meaning for the Ravens. In a pregame ceremony, the team honored Rachel Givens, a 2008 graduate who was killed in a hit-and-run accident in October. Givens was a talented soccer and basketball player who was part of the school’s first two state-championship basketball teams.
“She’s a big part of our program,” said Williams, who finished with 13 points. “We played for her.”
Auburn Riverside’s McKenzie Williams finished with 10 points, all in the second half after missing most of the first with two fouls.
“This is disappointing,” Kentridge coach Bob Sandall said. “But they defended well.”
Kentridge junior Alicia Dugan had another big night with 19 points, including five three-pointers, which tied a school record.