For all the the things that Amiyah Ware has accomplished for the Cedar Ridge women’s basketball team the past two years, the only thing missing was winning a tournament game.

Until Monday night.

In her final game inside Red Wolves Gymnasium, Ware scored 17 points as Cedar Ridge committed only four turnovers to defeat Southern Alamance 35-28 in the opening round of the Central Conference Tournament. The Red Wolves advance to face Eastern Alamance at Person High School in the semifinals on Wednesday night at 6PM.

It is the first postseason tournament win for the Red Wolves women’s basketball team since February 21, 2017, when they defeated Cleveland in the opening round of the 3A State Playoffs in Clayton.

Cedar Ridge trailed 16-15 at halftime, but the Red Wolves held the Patriots to three points in the third quarter. The sequence that changed the game came when Red Wolf freshman center Kate Finnegan blocked a shot off a drive from Madison Brouillard, which was captured by Hailey McCloud. In a rare transition attempt against the Patriots, Ware threw a diagonal pass to Jamee Watson, who scored off a lay-in as she was hacked on the arm by Morgan Edmunds to even the game at 19-19.

Ware grabbed a rebound following a Patriots miss and was fouled by Sarah Kathryn Maness, which led to two Red Wolf free throws to put Cedar Ridge ahead 21-19 with 1:20 remaining in the third quarter.

Cedar Ridge point guard Sarah Utley opened the fourth quarter with a three-pointer off a drop off from Ware. Following a three-pointer from Brouillard, Watson grabbed an offensive rebound and fed Ware for a lay-in. Ware scored six points in the fourth quarter.

Finnegan and Hailey McCloud kept the Patriots from scoring in the paint. Southern Alamance’s Sunny Yarnell, the team’s leading scorer, was limited to just two points with no field goals.

Finnegan finished with seven rebounds, three blocks and three steals.

It was the final game at home for Ware, Cameron Copeland, Cierra Copeland and Jordyan Delph.

Orange 62, Walter Williams 39: Just in time for the postseason, the Orange women’s team played its best half of the season against Walter Williams.

After getting blown out by 59-39 by the Bulldogs in Burlington on January 31, the Lady Panthers led wire-to-wire in an 62-39 victory in Hillsborough on Monday night. The Panthers advance to the Central Conference Tournament semifinals, where they will face top-seeded Western Alamance at Person High School on Tuesday night (tonight) at 6 PM.

Junior Evelyn George finished with 22 points and seven rebounds, while Shannon Murphy added ten points with eight rebounds.

In the first half, Orange (13-11) shot a torrid 15-of-18 of the field. Of the Lady Panthers 15 field goals in the first half, 13 were assisted.

Williams (15-10) Reagan Averett paced the Bulldogs with 13 points, but Williams shot just 26% from the field. Orange out rebounded the Bulldogs 43-34, with 17 offensive rebounds. Orange built its lead to as big as 27 points.

Orange point guard Maura McMurtry finished with nine assists.

It seemed destined to be a long night for Williams during pregame warmups when they were assessed a technical foul for leaving players out of their scorebook. Instead of a jump ball, the game started with George making two technical free throws and it didn’t get any better for the Bulldogs from there.

Murphy drained a short jumper off a pass from Marshea Byrd, who finished with ten points, four rebounds and three assists. George scored consecutive field goals, each one assisted by Byrd, and then Byrd scored off a pass from McMurtry to build a 10-3 lead, leading to a Williams timeout.

After Adkins cored a three-pointer with 3:21 remaining in the first quarter, Orange led 16-5. The lead stayed at double-digits for the remainder of the game after George added another shot from downtown.


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