A technical foul in the closing minutes of the Junction City Lady Jays 59-53 loss to Leavenworth Saturday in the 2018 Firebird Winter Classic helped tip the outcome in favor of the Pioneers.
The game was tied 53-53 when a foul was called on Junction City,and just seconds later a technical foul on the Lady Jays. Leavenworth proceeded to hit two of four free throws, and because of the technical retained possession of the basketball. They turned that possession into two more points and went on two hit late free throws after Junction City was forced to foul in the closing seconds.
It was a game in which it appeared the Lady Jays had a chance to win. Coach Derek Petty explained the situation after the game. “Our point guard decided to say something to someone on the floor and the ref overheard and teed her up.” Petty later added you can’t do that, and you need to have basketball smarts.
Junction City ( 3-10 ) finished sixth in the tournament hosted by Lawrence Free State, going 1-2 in three games. Wichita South won the tournament championship by defeating Washburn Rural in the title game 44-40.
Junction City will host Highland Park next Friday.