For the Inglemoor High girls basketball team, Friday marked the start of a hopeful new stretch.
For No. 1 Bothell, Friday was the scare of the season.
The Cougars scored the final seven points of the game to survive at Inglemoor High School in Kenmore, beating the Vikings 53-51 to remain unbeaten in KingCo play.
Bothell (8-0 KingCo, 12-1) trailed by five points with 29 seconds left. Senior guard Keyonna Jones hit a quick layup, and fellow senior Taya Corosdale was fouled while shooting a 3-pointer.
“We were looking for me to come off for the three or Keyonna to drive,” Corosdale said. “Keyonna was open, so they came for me. I just tried to get it up as fast as I could and draw the foul. Luckily, they called it and I got it.”
Corosdale hit all three offerings, tying the game at 51. Jones hit two free throws with 7.7 seconds remaining to give Bothell the unlikely lead. And through out the final few minutes, the bench never really lost it’s composure.
“Taya and Keyonna have played a lot of basketball, and some of our younger girls are starting to get more [experience,]” Bothell coach Kent Shaefer said. “I think they just believe that they’re going to win — or believe that they can win, so they stay in it.”
Jones led all scorers with 21 points. Corosdale scored 18, and the pair combined for all but two of the Cougars’ second half points. The Cougars led by five at the end of the third quarter, but Inglemoor hit a pair of 3 pointers — one each from Lucy Young and Hannah Shimek — to take a 49-44 lead.
For Inglemoor (3-5, 6-7), a slim lead in a big game was unfamiliar territory.
“From scoring three points in the first half against Woodinville to losing a point guard in the very first game to losing a starting senior guard in our winter tournament, losing a game after starting 14-0 to Skyline — there’s just everything that we’ve had to conquer up to this point,” Inglemoor coach Kristina Schumacher said. “Being in a close game, having a lead and losing it is not one we’ve had to overcome yet.”
The loss aside, Inglemoor’s performance was enough to spark a hopes for a top-four seed in the conference playoffs. The top six teams make the tournament, and the top two teams get a bye in the first round on Feb. 8.
Inglemoor is two games behind Skyline and Eastlake for the third seed.
“I came in thinking we were going to win this game, just because I think we can beat anybody in this league,” Inglemoor post Amanda Luckett said. “I have that much confidence in myself and in my teammates. Being that close with them gave us that much more energy and drive to win this game. We had it in the bag, but we gave it away toward the end.”
Luckett once again led the Vikings in scoring and rebounding, and finished with 16 points and 11 rebounds.
The veteran senior had the task of tackling Corosdale, the defending conference MVP, an All-American nominee and Oregon State commit. The two have competed against one another for several years, both at the high school level and on the AAU circut.
And on Friday, Schumacher said, Luckett came to play.
“A lot of props to Taya — she always finds momentum-killers, hits open shots when she needs to,” Schumacher said. “She does these little things, but I thought something out of Amanda was a little bit greater. There was something the stands were watching in Amanda tonight. She had to play physical and take [Corosdale] out of her game and make smart decisions and hold our team on her shoulders.”
While Inglemoor’s remaining opponents aren’t ranked as highly as Bothell, the Vikings are still in the toughest meat of their schedule. A home game against Issaquah on Jan. 18 precedes road games against Woodinville on Jan. 20 and Eastlake on Jan. 25.
But after the close game with Bothell, the message was clear: Inglemoor still has some fight.
“We’re taking [this performance] into the rest of the season,” Luckett said.”That marks the start of the second half, so we’re going into the second half with that much more confidence. If we can contend with the No. 1 team in the state, we can contend with anybody.”
Shimek added 14 points and Young scored 10 for Inglemoor. Jenna Troy had eight points, six boards and three blocked shots.
Sophomore Kelsey Hudson scored 10 points for Bothell.