Senior guard Elizabeth Roebuck nailed the winning layup at the buzzer Monday to life St. Luke’s Episcopal to a 60-58 victory over Mars Hill Bible in the Class 1A semifinals of the 98th AHSAA State Basketball Championships at the BJCC Legacy Arena Monday.
The win sends Coach Gareth Trawick’s Wildcats (22-4) into Thursday afternoon’s Class 1A state finals at Legacy Arena against Spring Garden (34-2) at 4 p.m. The Panthers won 56-35 over Elba in the other semifinal.
Roebuck finished with 13 points, five rebounds and three steals. Teammate Iamunique Bowie, a sophomore guard for St. Luke’s, added had 15 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists and junior Whitney Novak had a team-high 16 points. Haley Patterson scored 12 points and had 10 rebounds.
Mars Hill Bible (28-8), trailing 58-56, tied the game with 15 seconds remaining on Lauren Allen’s assist to Kylie Thigpen to sank the bucket to knot the game at 58-58. The Panthers of Coach Jay Mitchell led 33-25 at the half and 48-47 heading into the final quarter.
Neely Johns led Mars Hill with 17 points, four assists and three steals. Erika Mitchell added 16 points, Riley Vaughn scored 12 and had team-high six rebounds. Thigpen finished with three points.
Walker coached St. Luke’s boys to the state finals last year and now has the Lady Wildcats in the finals for the first time.