It wasn’t so much that Gonzaga Prep girls coach Mike Arte wondered if his Greater Spokane League-leading Bullpups would bounce back after their first league defeat.
Arte, though, did like the answer Tuesday.
Gonzaga Prep did what it didn’t do in its 52-42 loss to Mead – the Bullpups made shots, especially in the clutch.
The Bullpups held off the Shadle Park Highlanders 51-48 to increase their first-place lead to two games.
“It’s a great answer because (the Highlanders) are a quality team,” Arte said.
G-Prep senior Tia Presley broke a 46-46 tie when she scored in the key off a nice inbounds pass from Ashley Largent with 1:15 remaining. With 21.3 seconds to go, Lindsay Stockton, who is shooting less than 50 percent for the season from the free-throw line, made both ends of a 1-and-1 to provide the final margin.
Shadle had a final opportunity to tie, but Chelsea Chandler’s 3-pointer from the top of the arc bounded off the rim.
The Bullpups (13-2, 12-1 league) opened the game like they would run the Highlanders (11-4, 10-3) off the court like they did in a 57-35 runaway during the first half of league play.
A 3-pointer by Presley gave G-Prep a 15-4 lead at the 4:13 mark of the first quarter. But the Bullpups went scoreless the rest of the period, allowing the Highlanders to pull within 15-11 going into the second.
Shadle pulled within 15-13 22 seconds into the second on a jumper by Chandler, but G-Prep pushed the lead back to double digits.
The Highlanders had another end-of-quarter rally, pulling with 27-21 going into halftime.
The second half was tight throughout.
Arte knew the rematch wouldn’t be another blowout.
“They’re a good team,” Arte said. “They’re well-coached and you’re not going to get away from teams that are well-coached. They looked like the Shadle Park I know.”
G-Prep built a 44-39 lead in the final period, but Shadle fought back to tie it at 44 on a basket by Delaney Hert and a 3-pointer from Chandler. The score would be knotted a final time at 46 before G-Prep pulled ahead in the final minute.
“Prep is a good basketball team and they defend hard,” Shadle coach Chad Dezellem said. “Sometimes we try to do things that we might get away with against a little bit slower team. It ended up being turnovers. I told them to be quick but don’t hurry. I think they must have heard the hurry part.”
Presley finished with a game-high 24 points to go with six rebounds, four steals and three assists. Aleisha Hathaway led Shadle with 15 points, five rebounds and two assists.
Lewis and Clark 83, University 47: The visiting Tigers (11-4, 10-3) snapped a two-game losing streak by outscoring the Titans (6-9, 5-8) 51-27 combined in the first and third quarters. Devyn Galland led LC with 30 points. Hayley Hendricksen had 20 points and six rebounds.
Hallie Gennett led U-Hi with 16 points.
North Central 42, Ferris 34: The Indians (10-5, 10-4) outscored the visiting Saxons (3-11, 2-11) 17-6 in the decisive fourth period.
Riley Holsinger led NC with 21 points, eight rebounds and three steals and Tara Van Weerdhuizen had 12 rebounds and five blocked shots. Haley Sieverding led Ferris with 12 points.
Central Valley 49, Mt. Spokane 35: The visiting Bears (7-8, 6-7) used seven 3-pointers – four from Katie Estey who scored 14. Danielle Beltrame led Mt. Spokane (6-9, 4-9) with 10 points.
Mead 57, Rogers 16: The visiting Panthers (9-6, 7-6) charged to a 35-6 lead by halftime. Taylor Ingebritsen and Michelle Maguire had 11 and 10 points, respectively, for Mead. Brooklyn Smith had eight rebounds for Rogers (0-14, 0-13).