Feb 17, 2014 - By Steve Peck, PublisherTrailing by four after three quarters? Playing without their starting point guard for most of the fourth? Stuck in a short rotation with just eight players in uniform?
All in a day's work for the Riverton High School girls, who rallied to force overtime against the visiting Rock Springs Tigers, then dominated the extra period for 48-42 win Friday night at Wolverine Gym.
Just as she was in last month's last-second win over Rock Springs on the road, Savannah Salisbury delivered down the stretch for Riverton, scoring seven of her team's nine points in overtime as the Wolverines leveled their Class 4-A West conference record at 3-3. Two of those wins have come against Rock Springs.
Riverton actually was in position to win regulation, surviving the loss to fouls of point guard Camey Fegler with 4:12 left in regulation to take a 39-37 lead with under a minute to play.
Rock Springs star Summer Newman, returning to top form after being slowed by injuries for much of the season, connected to the Tigers with 38 ticks left, but Riverton's Maci Evans couldn't connect on a 3-pointer at the buzzer, setting the table for overtime.
When Fegler fouled out, "I thought we were in a little bit of trouble," said RHS coach Ron Porter. "It was an opportunity for other kids to step up, and they did. We were tired. It was a physical game."
Fegler had produced a big first half for RHS, which led 12-8 after the first quarter and 21-20 at halftime. The 5-6 junior put up nine points before the intermission, teaming well with 6-foot center Kiley Ridgway, whose six first-quarter points blazed the trail to a dominating performance by the end of the night. Ridgway has 14 points, 16 rebounds and four blocked shots.
Freshman Deni Lou Nicholls, pressed into extended playing time in Fegler's absence, gave Riverton goo production with eight points. She was perfect in four free-throw tries.
RHS dressed just eight players for the game.
"It was obviously a team effort, because we lost the lead late. We got some steals and finished. We rebounded extremely well and played with a bit of passion, and that was good to see," Porter said.
The Lady Wolverines are in the midst of their best season in a decade. Their record overall is 9-10, and they are in contention for a high seed in the 4-A West regional heading into this Thursday's road game against conference-leading Casper Natrona.
After managing a .500 record in a road-heavy schedule so far, Riverton gets mostly home cooking from here on out.
"We have three out of four at home. Right now we are concerned with Monday's practice. We will continue to shoot, and shoot, and shoot."
Newman led all scorers with 18 points.
"She hurt us," Porter said. "That is the first game she has played that well since she has been back (from injury).
"We gave her far too many open looks. If we see them again, we will make some adjustments to try and contain her."
ROCK SPRINGS 8 12 11 8 3 -- 42
RIVERTON 12 9 6 12 9 W22;- 48
Rock Springs -- Stevie Hill 3 2-2 8, Summer Newman 8 2-2 18, Kylah McConnell 3 0-2 6, Savanna Freuler 1 0-2 2, Randi Ellison 0 0-0 0, Kelsi Howe 0 0-0 0, Maggie Justinak 1 (2) 0-0 8. Totals 16 (2) 4-10 42.
Riverton -- Savannah Salisbury 4 1-4 9, Jensyn Pettit 1 2-2 4, Maci Evans 0 0-2 0, Kiley Ridgway 6 2-5 14, Camey Fegler 5 1-2 11, Morgan Doyle 1 0-0 2, Deni Lou Nicholls, 2 4-4 8. Totals 19 10-17 48.
Staff writer Craig Blumenshine contributed to this story
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