The Eagles' senior scored 22 points in Hubbard's 49-46 victory over Girard.
By JOE SCALZO
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
GIRARD -- A "typical" game for Jami Duvall is pretty atypical.
In a frenzied fourth quarter against Girard High, the Hubbard senior guard stayed cooler than a polar bear's pillow.
"She's a big game player," Hubbard coach David Konczal said. "When the game's on the line, she steps up."
Duvall scored 13 of her game-high 22 points in the fourth quarter Thursday to lead the Eagles to a 49-46 Trumbull Athletic Conference road victory.
"Somebody has to step up," Duvall said. "Lynle [Cornell] was hitting shots in the first half and I wasn't making anything. But in the fourth quarter I finally started hitting some shots."
Trailing 36-31 in the opening seconds of the fourth quarter, the Eagles went on a 13-0 run -- Duvall scored 10 straight points during one stretch -- and never again trailed.
"That was a pretty typical game for her," Konczal said of Duvall. "Sometimes she tries to be a little too unselfish, so we have to tell her to be more aggressive."
Indians' late rally
Of course, things got sticky down the stretch.
Hubbard took its biggest lead of the night -- 47-38 -- with 1:39 remaining, but Girard forced two straight Eagles turnovers and went on an 8-1 run to cut the deficit to 48-46.
"We knew they were going to make a run," Konczal said.
Duvall then missed two free throws, but Girard senior Jen Maravola missed a double-clutch 3-pointer with 20 seconds remaining.
Hubbard senior Jill Phillips grabbed the rebound, was fouled and hit one of two free throws.
Girard sophomore Lora Doran missed a game-tying 3-point attempt at the buzzer from just inside the half-court line.
"We took some really bad outside shots and they just sagged off us and let us take them," Girard coach Andrew Saxon said. "[Hubbard's] a good team, but we just didn't execute on offense."
To be frank, neither team did. And they weren't all that hot at the free throw line, either.
"We're not a very good free throw shooting team," said Konczal, whose team was 8-of-15 at the line in the fourth quarter, "and that's probably not the best place to be with the game on the line."
Girard shot 29 percent from the field (17-of-58) and 47 percent at the line (9-of-19). Hubbard shot 31 percent from the field (15-of-48) and 46 percent at the line (13-of-28).
Cornell added 17 points and Katy Jo Mroski grabbed 12 rebounds for the Eagles (5-1, 4-0 TAC), who split the season series with the Indians last year.
"We've definitely been preparing for this game," said Duvall, who added seven assists and five rebounds. "But we know the TAC isn't going to be given to us. We still have to play a lot of tough teams."
Cachet Murray led the Indians (4-1, 3-1) with 15 points and 13 rebounds, but fouled out with just under a minute remaining.
Maravola, who also fouled out in the final minute, had 14 points, seven steals and five assists and senior Tealle Hunkus added 11 points and 17 rebounds.
"I'd rather play this game in January and February," Konczal said. "It's such a big game and when you play this early, I think you're more vulnerable for an emotional letdown in the next game."
The Indians, whose only regular-season loss last season came at Hubbard in overtime, played mostly blowouts in their first four games and must use the loss as a learning experience, Saxon said.
"Some of the girls are a little down right now, but we're going to get better," he said, "and I'm sure Hubbard will too."