WINTHROP — Carrabec’s Brooke Welch and Molly Hay figured it was the right time to each unload a devastating 3-pointer against relentless Winthrop.

Without any fanfare, Welch dropped in her 3 and Hay followed with her long-range shot with two minutes left, allowing the Cobras to squeak out a 40-36 victory over the Ramblers in a Mountain Valley Conference girls basketball game Friday night.

The Ramblers (2-3) dominated the first half, but everything changed in the second half as the two teams started trading baskets in a tight fourth quarter.

That’s when the calm and collective Welch (seven points in the game) and Hay lobbed in their 3-pointers and knocked the wind out of the Ramblers’ sails a bit.

“I knew the team was down and I knew our shots hadn’t been falling — and you have to keep on shooting and hope it goes in,” Welch said. “They are a good team, but we knew that we just needed to step it up and show them how we play ball.”

Hay thought her shot was going to be a harmless air ball.

“The game was really close and my team was counting on me, so I had to take it,” Hay said. “We always pick it up in the second half with our intensity — and I think that’s what really pulled us through at the end.” 

Welch called Hay “a great addition to our team.”

“She has helped us in every game and we are happy she is with us,” Welch added.

Winthrop was slowing down and had a hard time with their scoring toward the end of the game. Cheyenne Cahill scored the game-high 16 points for the Cobras (6-1).

“It was a battle,” Carrabec coach Skip Rugh said. “This was the first time we played a team that fast. That team is extremely fast and they play hard. It took us a while to adjust to it.”

But the Cobras figured it out in the second half.

“I think they slowed down a little and we caught up a little,” Rugh said. “We just kept battling. They never gave up and they kept battling.”

The Ramblers’ press was strong and their lightning-fast passing seemed to confuse Carrabec for most of the first half before the Cobras got wise to Winthrop.

Winthrop’s tenacious defense caused several key turnovers that led to baskets, and by the time the first quarter ended, Winthrop was on top 12-5 with several key points from senior forward Maddie Perkins, who scored the team-high 12 points.

“Defensively, I thought we came out and executed our game plan,” Winthrop coach John Baehr said. “We’ve got a long way to go defensively, but (Carrabec) is a great, solid program. 

“The coach does a great job over there. I told the girls, ‘They don’t make mistakes,’ so for us to have them make mistakes the first half, I was proud of the girls. Perkins played really well tonight. She does everything we ask, so I am proud of the way she played.”

In the second quarter, there was small let-up on defense for Winthrop, but the Ramblers kept their distance in the second quarter to head into the overtime with a 23-16 lead. But the Ramblers clung to their 28-24 lead heading into the fourth quarter as the Cobras were about to make their move in the final period.

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