It wasn't until the final seconds of the fourth quarter that the Trojans locked in their win against the Benton Bobcats. On Thursday Feb. 13 the STC Trojan varsity girls traveled to Van Horne to take on the Bobcats in a non-conference game. The Bobcats (6-15), belong to the WAMAC west conference and are in a rebuilding year as they graduated seven seniors from last years 21-3, state qualifying team. In their final regular season game the Trojans not only looked to rectify last season's 68-40 loss to the Bobcats, but also gained a valuable opportunity to scout their first round opponent for this years playoffs. South Tama hosts Benton for round one of the 3A Regional Tournament on Saturday February 15.
The Trojan lineup consisted of Regina Balderas, Paige Van Dyk, Trisha Walz, Madie Bacon and Tieranny Keahna. Starting for the Bobcats were Gabi Kuester, Alyssa Wiebel, Lea Brunssen, Natalie Parizek, and Margaret Weirather.
The Bobcats got an early start in the game, outscoring the Trojans in the first quarter 13-9. As the quarter came to a close Balderas narrowed the margin by nailing a three pointer at the buzzer. South Tama took their first lead of the game after Tieranny Keahna hit a short jumper at 4:08, Trojans 18-17. Benton's, Sheldon Steinford drained a three with :20 left and tied the game at 26 apiece going into halftime.
Regina Balderas prepares for a shot and is fouled in non-conference game at Van Horne.
Chronicle Photo/Allison Graham
The Trojans maintained lead in the third quarter until Weibel with 3:30 left in the quarter, hit a three point shot, tying the game at 31. Van Dyk, who was as cool as a cucumber, skillfully controlled the flow of the game and hit a three pointer just before the end of the third quarter. South Tama scored 15 points in the quarter while their defense held the Bobcats to only seven points. This would give STC an 8 point lead, their largest of the game, going into the fourth quarter.
Much like several of the Trojans' recent outings, the game would not be decided until the final minute of play. The Bobcats clawed their way into the game by outscoring the Trojans 24-19 in the fourth. With Kuester, Benton's starting forward fouling out early in the fourth the Bobcats had to adjust. Heilman tied the game with two free throws at the 5:10 mark. Bacon checked back in midway through the fourth quarter and regained the Trojan lead with 4:36 remaining."The Trojans led 56-52 with just under a minute and after some timely free throw shooting pulled out a 60-57 victory over the Bobcats."
Bacon lead all scorers and once again tied her season high of 18 points, despite sitting much of the second half. Keahna scored 15, Balderas 12, Walz 7, Van Dyk 6 and Stubbs had two.
We will be seeing more of the Benton Bobcats next season. South Tama moves back into the WAMAC west conference to begin the 2014 fall athletic season." The Bobcats look to return 8 of it's 11 players next season.