Despite holding a comfortable lead for the first three-quarters of the game, the Williams girls’ basketball team had to fend off a fourth quarter rally by the visiting Maxwell Panthers to claim a 33-29 victory in a game on Dec. 13.
It was the second meeting between the two squads this season, and it took everything the ‘Jackets had to come away with the win.
While the Yellowjackets maintained a nine-point advantage going into the final quarter, the Panthers fought back, cutting the lead to four with 4:47 left in the game, when Emma Hendrix made good on a basket-and-one, then after Magdalena Torres drained a long-range three two possessions later, took their first lead of the game.
However, it would be short lived, as Williams went back ahead, as Ashley Garcia answered with a three from the top of the key.
After another three by Briana Jaime, the ‘Jackets were finally able to restore order and put the game away.
Garcia finished with a team high eight points to lead a balanced attack by Williams, who had six other players break into the scoring column, while Hendrix and Torres each tallied 10 points for the Panthers.
Williams (4-3) had a game scheduled with Live Oak on Dec. 16, although the results were not reported and now goes on hiatus until Jan. 6, when it opens tournament play in East Nicolaus.
Meanwhile, Maxwell bounced back with a 36-24 home win over Potter Valley the following evening, then ventured north to compete in the 41st Annual Burney Jamboree, where it bested the host Raiders 42-24 on Dec. 17 behind a double-double from freshman Fatima Cano, who grabbed 15 rebounds and scored 12 points in addition to making five blocks.
The Panthers then suffered a 42-35 loss to Big Valley, in which Cano again doubled up with 10 points and 16 boards, while sophomore Emma Fleming pitched in with eight points and six rebounds.
To round out play in Burney, Maxwell fell 50-14 to Butte Valley, although no individual statistics were available.
Now 3-7 for the season, the Panthers were at the Los Molinos Tournament this week, where they faced CORE Butte and Los Molinos on Monday and Tuesday, respectively. ■