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Oakland girls hold off Westlake, Georgia, 52-49

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SMYRNA -- Oakland's girls were pushed to the limit Friday night before rallying to defeat Westlake, Georgia, 52-49 in the She Got Game Classic at Stewarts Creek High School

Westlake held the lead for much of the game as the Lady Patriots had a hard time stopping Taylor Hosendove, who had 16 points and 4 rebounds on the night with two steals.

Oakland starting guard Faith Adams went down in the quarter with an injury and didn't return. The first quarter ended with a score of 17-11 in favor of Westlake.

Although Oakland was playing from behind most of the game, the Lady Patriots defense is what kept them in the game.

"Defense is the most important thing to have in basketball before you can do anything, and I feel like my team came out and did a good job and that's how we won the game," said Oakland's Shamaria Gaines, who came off the bench and had five blocks.

Despite laboring offensively, the Lady Patriots' defense kept them close as they trailed just 29-25 at halftime.

"We were very unorganized and we were playing without two starters," said Oakland coach Jennifer Grandstaff. "We just tried to get a little confidence in ourselves, and in the second half I thought we played a lot better."

In the third quarter each team put up 10 points, leaving the score at still a four-point lead for the Lady Lions.

Westlake's Anastasia Warren had little time on the bench and scored 16 points on the night. The fourth quarter is when Oakland began to put together stops and go on a run of its own.

The Lady Patriots captured their first lead of the game since early in the first quarter with six minutes left in the game. Oakland's Shelby Jane Petty led all scorers on the night with 18 points and also came down with five rebounds and six assists.

"We had to get our emotion back and step it up on defense," Petty said. "I had to give it all I had for my team mates because they got me there."

There was many lead changes in the fourth quarter and it was tied at 49-49 in the final minute of the game when Petty found Maggie Knowles in the paint for a layup to give them a two-point lead with only 40 seconds left.

Westlake was not able to score another point after the possession. Hosendove turned the ball over with only 10 seconds left which was their last attempt at tying the game. Oakland hit one more free throw before the end of the game raising the score to the 52

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