QUICKSBURG — It was a typical Macy Smith play, but this time it meant much more.
The Strasburg junior stole the ball and scored a layup to score her 1,000th point during the Rams’ 46-43 Bull Run District girls basketball win over the Generals on Tuesday.
As soon as she scored Smith began crying, and the game was stopped to give her the game ball as she celebrated with family and teammates.
“It’s crazy, because I’ve been dreaming of this since COVID,” Smith said. “I made a list of goals that I wanted to accomplish when I started high school and this was one of them. I started crying because it just meant that much to me. And I do it for God — and he came through.”
Strasburg girls basketball coach Darin Jenkins said he was proud of what Smith accomplished.
“Obviously, it’s well deserved,” Jenkins said. “She’s put in the time. She continues to put in the time. This is not going to stop her. She’ll find another goal that she wants to accomplish and she’ll put her mind to it — and she’ll go do it. I’m extremely proud of her. She’s one heck of a basketball player, and an even better person. It’s always nice for other peers to see that ‘hey when you do put in the time and you work hard this is what can happen.’ I’m just happy for her. I’m happy for our team.”
There was a good crowd on hand, especially on the Strasburg side of the bleachers. Central’s girls basketball players were at the game as was Sherando senior girls basketball player Grace Burke who cheered on Smith when she achieved the milestone. The Central players and coach Ashleigh Fletcher even chanted Smith’s name after she reached the milestone. Mountain View girls basketball coach Jeff Burner and his players and coaching staff also gave her a round of applause when she scored her 1,000th point.
“The support that I have means a lot to me,” Smith said. “It means a lot to have all three (Shenandoah County) schools come together and support one person.”
Burner said he has a lot of respect for Smith, her game and this accomplishment.
“What I respect about her is the way she plays,” Burner said of Smith. “She plays with class. She’s a good sportsman. She’s just a tough kid, and she does things the right way and she plays hard. Congratulations to her. I’m glad that she had that accomplishment.”
Burner and the Generals didn’t make it easy on Smith or the Rams.
Smith entered the game needing five points to reach 1,000, but only had two in the opening period as Strasburg led 11-9.
Mountain View played a box-and-one on Smith with Mountain View’s Kenzie Stanley and Lacey Stroop guarding Smith throughout the night.
“We made her work for every point she got tonight,” Burner said of Smith. “I was really pleased with Kenzie and Lacey defensively. And then the other kids did the things that they needed to do.”
Back-to-back baskets by Strasburg’s Addison Morgan gave the Rams a 15-11 lead with 5:55 left in the second period. Smith scored on a layup to stretch the lead to 17-11 just 22 seconds later and move her within a point of 1,000.
With 4:36 left in the first half, Smith stole the ball and made the milestone layup. She was guarded on the play by Mountain View’s Bre Franklin, which Smith said she thought was fitting.
“It’s actually kind of funny, because I remember Bre Franklin’s sister (Mountain View 2021 graduate Kylene Franklin) hit her 1,000th point on me. And so I vividly remember that and (Bre Franklin) was guarding me obviously when I made that layup. I heard the crowd cheer when I was going for that layup and I just started crying. And then after that I don’t know what happened.”
“It’s very fitting the way she got it,” Jenkins said. “It was a steal, which we’ve seen that over and over and over and over — that’s who she is.”
The Rams found themselves in a dogfight with the Generals all night long. The game went back-and-forth throughout the fourth period.
Strasburg freshman Emily Gorrell hit a 3-pointer with 2:36 left to put the Rams on top, 39-38. Franklin scored on a driving layup to give Mountain View its last lead of the game, 40-39 with 2:26 left.
Smith showed why she’s scored so many points in three years. She converted on a conventional three-point play with 59 seconds left to give Strasburg a 42-40 lead.
After a Mountain View turnover, Smith was fouled and made two free throws for a 44-40 lead with 22 seconds remaining.
Franklin was fouled attempting a 3-pointer and made all three free throws to keep the Generals close, 44-43 with 10 seconds left.
Gorrell then stepped to the line and calmly sank two free throws for a 46-43 lead with seven seconds left.
“She’s a freshman, but she walked up to the line like she was a senior,” Jenkins said of Gorrell. “She knew she was going to make it. You could see the confidence in her eyes. And I had confidence in her, because she’s just a great shooter and a great free throw shooter.”
Franklin missed on a 3-point attempt in the final seconds as the Rams held on for the victory.
Mountain View senior Mya Councill and Franklin had 15 points each to lead the Generals. Franklin also had 11 rebounds and two assists, and Councill had six rebounds and three assists. Ava Pittington had six points and eight rebounds for Mountain View.
The Generals (4-15, 1-12 Bull Run) play at first-place Clarke County on Friday.
“We’ve told the kids that we can play with anybody and I feel like we can do that,” Burner said. “But it would be nice to get over the hump and win a couple of them. That would be nice for the kids. They do what we ask them to do, and they’ve improved tremendously as the season has gone on. And as a coach you can’t ask for much more than that.”
The Rams (14-5, 10-3 Bull Run) were led by Smith with 17 points. She now has 1,012 for her career. Smith also had five rebounds and four steals. Gorrell had 10 points, five rebounds and two assists, and freshman Jayden Stinnette had seven points, four rebounds and two assists for Strasburg.
The Rams host Rappahannock County on Friday in a matchup of two teams tied for second place in the Bull Run District. The Rams close the regular season out with two big games next week against Luray and rival Central, two teams tied for fourth place in the district.
“I do think we’re ready,” Smith said of the final stretch of the regular season. “I just think we need to stay together and keep doing the little things.”
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