ST. PETERSBURG — The Pinellas-Hillsborough County girls game took on a playoff atmosphere at Eckerd College on Friday as the contest went into overtime for the first time in its 12-year history. In the end, Boca Ciega's Tamara Taylor scored four of her game-high 36 in the second overtime as Pinellas outscored Hillsborough in the final frame 10-4 to earn a 109-103 victory.
"I told the rest of the girls to bring it, and we did," said Taylor, who garnered MVP honors in last week's FACA all-star game in Ocala. "It was pretty special to end my high school career with all these other great players."
The game was a back-and-forth affair until Pinellas took a 90-84 lead with a minute and a half left before Hillsborough fought back to tie the game with 15 seconds left in regulation.
In the first overtime, the Pinellas team held a 99-97 lead with less than 30 seconds left when Jefferson's Laurie' Beaty stole the ball and went coast-to-coast for a tying layup. Beaty then came up with another steal and eventually drew a foul with .4 seconds left.
Beaty missed both attempts as the game went into the second overtime. She scored the first two points in the second extra period to give Hillsborough a lead but fouled out on the next possession in which Osceola's Hannah Demarest (21 points) made two free throws to tie.
After Durant's Taylor Broadnax (22 points) made a jumper on Hillsborough's next possession, Demarest hit a jumper in the lane to start an 8-0 run.
Indian Rocks Christian's Rachel Burnett scored 14 and Lakewood's Taye'lor Trotter had 10 as the other double-figure scorers for Pinellas.
The Hillsborough County boys all-star team came fully loaded to the all-star game against a Pinellas County team missing five all-stars that most likely would have made a different in Hillsborough's 132-108 rout of Pinellas.
But the ones who were in attendance for Hillsborough put on a highlight-reel show as Durant's Andre Nation scored 25, Sickles' Rashawn Rembert had 20 and Newsome's Trent Mackey had 19.
"We came out to have fun, but at the same time, you want to compete," said Nation, who won the slam dunk contest.
Wharton's Xavier Owens had 14 points as the only other player in double figures for Hillsborough.
The Gibbs' twin brothers of Deion (25 points) and Devante Miley (18 points) led the Pinellas team in scoring. Tarpon's C.J. Bargman had 11 points as the other player in double figures.