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Wesleyan falls in overtime for first loss

SANDY SPRINGS -- Wesleyan won't get a shot at unbeaten and nationally ranked Tennessee power Riverdale in the Red Division of Peach State Basketball's Holiday Invitational.

The Wolves couldn't hold a seven-point fourth quarter lead and lost 61-60 in overtime to Bolingbrook, Ill., despite 25 points by Katie Frerking in the first round Thursday at Holy Innocents'.

The Auburn signee hit a 3-pointer with two seconds left, but with Wesleyan out of timeouts, Bolingbrook didn't have to inbound the ball.

Wesleyan was the victim of poor foul shooting (18 of 33) and too many turnovers at crucial times down the stretch.

"If we make our free throws, we win the game," coach Jan Azar said. "We have to improve that and I wasn't happy with our decision making in the fourth quarter either. We didn't close out the game like we should have."

It was a frustrating day for Georgia teams in the top division of the third annual event, with Buford also losing to complete the 0-4 showing.

It was the first loss this season for Wesleyan, which also fell to the Bollingbrook last season in the Nike Tournament of Champions outside Phoenix.

This game was nothing like that 58-43 defeat, though.

Wesleyan (9-1) seemed to have control after overcoming an early 13-2 deficit with a 14-0 run and then taking a 27-17 lead early in the third quarter.

But Bollingbrook (8-3) overcame a 48-41 deficit thanks to a trio of 3-pointers by Aysia Bugg and a tying free throw by Destiny Harris with 17.2 seconds left in regulation.

Bollingbrook outscored Wesleyan 7-1 to start the overtime and then held on in the frantic final moments.

"We lost everyone from last year and we're trying to get our girls to learn what it takes to win," Bollingbrook coach Anthony Smith said. "This was a step, but it was a struggle."

Nikki McDonald scored 11 points for the Wolves and Brittany Stevens and Paige Mosley each contributed 10. That trio and Frerking had all except four of the Wesleyan points.

Bugg scored 18 for Bollingbrook, which will face Riverdale in the semifinals at 12:15 p.m. today. Riverdale (13-0) won 68-52 over Alcovy, which will play Wesleyan at 9:15 a.m. in the consolation bracket.

Holy Cross (Md.) 37, Buford 36

Buford, up 20-10 in the second quarter, went ice cold in the second half and was stunned 37-36 by Maryland's Academy of Holy Cross, which came in with a 3-5 record.

Kaela Davis scored 12 points, but missed a pair of free throws with 18.8 seconds left that would have put the Wolves (5-2) ahead.

Down 13-10 after the first quarter and 22-17 at halftime, Holy Cross went up 25-24 at the end of the third quarter and led 33-26 midway in the fourth before the Wolves rallied. MacKenzie Darrah's basket with 40 second remaining made it a one-point game.

Buford was just 5-for-12 at the foul line in the defeat, which dropped the Wolves into a consolation game against St. Francis at 3:15 p.m. today. St. Francis lost to New Hope (N.C.) 62-46.

Janee Brown led Holy Cross with 10 points. Kristina Nelson scored eight for Buford.