HAMPDEN — For about three and a half quarters, the basketball gods weren’t smiling down on the Hampden Academy girls Tuesday night.
But Katelyn DeRaps, who had been held in check since scoring 10 first-quarter points, regained her shooting touch at precisely the right time.
The senior guard poured in 16 of her 28 points in the fourth quarter and overtime as coach Chad Bradbury’s club rallied for a 50-43 KVAC Class A basketball victory over Messalonskee of Oakland.
The Broncos (8-1) trailed by as many as eight in the second half, but were determined not lose on their home floor after suffering a tough road loss to Edward Little last week.
“We were all pretty down after the Edward Little game, and we just needed a chance to redeem ourselves and get our fire back, and I think that we had to pull through in the fourth quarter and overtime to get it back,” DeRaps said.
As good as DeRaps was, it was Jordan Maxwell who jumpstarted the Broncos’ comeback. She converted a Helene Sherburne steal into a buzzer-beating layup to cap the third quarter and make it a six-point game.
“Plays like that when you’re not down by a whole lot definitely give you the adrenaline to get going and start another run,” said DeRaps.
Hampden’s defense buckled down, holding the Eagles (5-4) to one fourth-quarter field goal while consistently chipping away. DeRaps finally tied it at 36 with a perimeter shot from the left corner with 2:51 to play.
After Messalonskee’s Shelby Cutten converted a conventional three-point play to put the Eagles back up with 1:39 left, DeRaps scored the game’s next five points to give Hampden a 41-39 lead with 33 seconds remaining.
Mary Badeen tied it at 41 for the Eagles with a driving layup with 15 seconds left to send the game into overtime. Megan Pelletier’s lay-in then gave coach Brenda Beckwith’s club a 43-41 lead early in the extra period.
But DeRaps came through again, hitting a runner off the glass on the next HA possession and completing the three-point play to put the Broncos ahead for good.
“Katelyn carried us tonight with a huge 28 points, (with) some other girls struggling shooting,” said Bradbury. “If we can pull off wins like that and not have good shooting nights, it’s going to be nice.”
Messalonskee had a chance, down 45-43 with 28 seconds left, but an inbounds pass was thrown out of bounds. HA’s Courtney Doyon was fouled intentionally on the following possession.
The Eagles wound up with 24 turnovers while struggling to a 13-for-40 shooting night, and Beckwith felt DeRaps got too many open looks near the end of regulation.
“That’s part of the fact that we’re a young team. I called a timeout, said she likes that corner shot, make sure know where she’s at. Twice back to back we didn’t know where she was at,” Beckwith said. “They capitalized on that, and hey, I give them credit.”
The Broncos also controlled Badeen defensively, holding her to six points on 1 of 9 shooting.
“We dogged them up and down the court all game, a lot of full-court man, a lot of wearing them down,” Bradbury said.
DeRaps added, “We had to key in on Badeen and Pelletier because they’re two very good players and I think in the second half we really buckled down.”
Hampden led 10-3 early in the first quarter, but Messalonskee outscored the Broncos 19-10 for the remainder of the first half to take a 22-20 lead at halftime.
The Eagles were led by Pelletier’s 15 points and 11 rebounds while Whitney Moore hauled in 10 rebounds for Hampden.