But Friday night, Bangor’s junior guard put herself in a similar position and produced a relatively similar stunning result to lead the Rams to a 54-52 overtime win over Edward Little.
Gilmore was directly under the basket with time running out. When Mary Butler’s shot from the outside fell short, Gilmore was right there for the putback as time expired.
“I don’t really remember what happened,” Gilmore said. “I just saw Mary start to shoot. So I just crashed the boards. I knew the clock was running down.”
Bangor (3-0) had watched EL tie the game with 10 seconds left on a Tianna Harriman 3. The Rams called timeout and set up a plan for the final possession.
“We just wanted to spread the ball and have some movement and wanted to see what we could get out of it,” Bangor coach Joe Johnson said. “With seven seconds, you’ve just got to break something down and make a play like Emily did. Thankfully, someone got to the basket.”
Butler fired up a shot from the left side, right around the 3-point line. Gilmore was behind the defense and caught the rebound. She immediately shot the layup before time expired.
“I was just trying to get it back up as fast as I could,” said Gilmore, who finished with a team-high 17. “I knew it went in, but I was worried about whether it would count or not.”
It was the first loss of the season for EL (2-1). The Red Eddies got a superb effort from Emily Jacques with a game-high 26 points. She was a force for EL but fouled out in overtime.
“I thought we had some good opportunities in the overtime and we had some good opportunities down the stretch,” EL coach Craig Jipson said. “We just needed to make a few more shots.”
Harriman added 11 for EL and Brooke Reynolds had eight. Bangor also got 15 from Sarah Bragg and 11 from Cordelia Stewart.
It was a Bragg 3 with 1:38 that tied the game at the end of regulation. EL had built a 45-40 lead on six straight points from Jacques during an 8-0 run. Bangor got back-to-back baskets by Stewart to make it 45-44. Then Jacques scored on a three-point play to make it 48-44 with 2:27 left. Stewart sank a free throw to trim the lead with 2:07 left.
Bragg’s tying 3 was her second of the game. She and Gilmore had two each.
“Sarah did really well,” Gilmore said. “She had a lot of 3’s.”
Both teams had a chance to break the tie late in regulation. EL had the ball and ran the clock down but lost it on a Bragg steal with 28 seconds left. Then Bangor had a try at the last shot but a bid by Stewart from the left side missed.
“I loved how we battled,” Jipson said. “Bangor is a great team. They have a Division I player (Mary Butler) and a player that’s going to Bowdoin (Stewart). That’s one of the top East teams, and I thought we just went toe-to-toe with them.”
In overtime, Bangor went up 51-48 on free throws by Katie Butler and Mary Butler. EL got a free throw from Eraleena Hairston, but Bangor preserved the lead with a Gilmore free throw with 30 seconds left.
EL was down to trying to set up Harriman for a 3. She missed a first attempt, but EL retained possession and got another try. She came off a quick screen and fired an off-balanced shot that tied it.
“She came off a screen pretty well,” Johnson said. “She looked like Stephen Curry on that one.”
Bangor still had seven seconds left to get the game-winner. Johnson tried to settle his team down for the final play. EL did a nice job defensively forcing the Rams to the outside but missed Gilmore in the paint.
“I thought we responded well,” Jipson said. “We played a lot of different kids. I thought a lot of young kids responded and played really hard. We just came up one rebound short.
“It’s a lesson learned. You can’t stop playing until that horn goes off. We had five kids out there that had an opportunity to get that rebound, and we didn’t get it.”