Shawna Senkel, special correspondent
The Ada News
The host Lady Tigers were able to hold off a scrappy Tupelo team by hitting key shots in the fourth quarter to finish the game with a 48-36 win.
Seniors Sarah Gross and Lauren Trimmer led the host Lady Tigers' charge, scoring 16 and 14 points respectively.
"We have made a conscious effort to work hard to improve on the defensive end of the court. Our fight defensively helped us get the win tonight. It was a good win," said Roff head coach Scott Morgan.
The boys game started out incredibly close, but the Roff Tigers changed things up at the half and took command in the third behind the leadership of Cade Carpenter and Shane Wise en route to a 57-42 win.
"It was a good win. We struggled a little in the first half and had to make some adjustments,” said Roff head coach Bo Thomason. “We played a much better second half. I felt like we worked hard.”
Roff 48, Tupelo 36
Tupelo sophomore Brittany Sanders had the hot hand in the first, connecting on two of three 3-point shots that saw the visiting Lady Tigers take an early lead 16-14 after the first quarter of play.
It was more of the same to start the second, as Tupelo went on a 4-0 run and extended the lead to six just 40 seconds into the period.
But senior Gross was able to answer with a quick bucket off the glass on the ensuing possession, and after a couple of missed free-throw attempts by Tupelo's Phylisha Chamberlain, Roff's Trimmer connected on a jumper in the lane to cut the lead back to two and force Tupelo coach Missy Rogers to call a timeout.
Coming out of the timeout, Roff freshman Jalee Hood was able to intercept a Tupelo pass and drive the length of the court for the easy layin, tying the game at 20 all with 4:46 left in the half. The host Lady Tigers would score the final seven points of the quarter to take a 27-20 halftime lead.
Both teams turned up the defensive pressure coming out of the locker room.
After two Roff turnovers and an offensive foul charged to Casey Kelley, Morgan called a quick timeout at the 6:38 mark to settle his troops.
But the game would continue to go back and forth until Tupelo's Kaley Sanders would connect on a pair of free throws after being fouled by Hood with 5:41 to go in the third that trimmed the Roff lead back to five.
Gross would tack on a free throw, and freshman Ashley Cornell would come up with the steal at the 4:25 mark that would set up a basket by Trimmer to give Roff its biggest lead of the game so far at 30-22.
Tupelo's Katie McCoy came alive, drawing a quick foul. She hit the first free throw, missed the second, got her own rebound and drew another foul before hitting two charity shots with four minutes to go, cutting the RHS lead back to 5.
At the 3:13 mark, Chamberlain muscled a shot in to bring the visiting Lady Tigers within three. However, the Lady Tigers of Tupelo would get no closer, as Roff would slow the offense down and increase the lead back to five on an offensive rebound and put back with just two seconds on the clock by Gross to end the third quarter.
The final eight minutes would start scoreless until Gross hit a free throw with 6:48 on the clock and McCoy hit a big 3-pointer at the 6:37 mark to once again pull Tupelo to within three.
Gross and Trimmer would then get a bucket apiece to push the Roff advantage to seven during a Tupelo shooting drought that would last over two minutes.
Roff would seal the visiting Lady Tigers’ fate by hitting an impressive 9-of-11 attempts at the free-throw line over the final three minutes of play.
Roff 57, Tupelo 42
The host Tigers jumped out to a quick lead with a nice assist from Zach Lewis to Dalton Madden for an easy two. The Roff press gave Tupelo trouble early. But Jon Umstead hit a pair of 3-pointers in the quarter to keep the game close. After one quarter of play, Roff was on top 21-17.
Tupelo's Chisum Henry started the second with a three to pull the visiting Tigers within one at the 7:48 mark.
Roff's Madden and Carpenter would get a bucket a piece to stretch the lead to five with just under five minutes to go in the half, and the host Tigers would go on to extend the lead to eight after a nice bump off the glass by freshmen reserve C.J. Johnson with 45 seconds on the clock. The shot sent Roff into the locker room with a 31-23 lead.
Roff freshman Dalton Reed would prove to be the offensive spark for Roff to start the second half, when he connected on a jumper at the 7:12 mark that would send the host on a 12-2 run until Henry connected on another three-ball to cut the lead to 43-27 with just over a minute to play in the third.
Carpenter started the fourth with a quick two off a nice assist from Hunter Larsh to push the lead to 45-27. The visiting Tigers would get no closer, as the Tigers turned up the heat on the offensive end, extending their lead to as much as 25 over the final six minutes of regulation. Roff saw nine players make the scoring column, with Carpenter leading the way with 14 points while Wise added 10 on 5-of-5 shooting from the field. Madden added eight points for the hosts.
Umsted led all scorers with 16 points for Tupelo, while Henry added 10. H.D. Bullard added eight points and nine rebounds for the visitors.
Tupelo will host the Tupelo Invitational starting Monday. The field also includes local teams from Roff, Coalgate, Konawa and Stonewall.