Goldsboro forward McKayla Roberts.jpg

Goldsboro forward McKayla Roberts (15) gets ready to shoot a free throw during Goldsboro’s game against Midway.

Goldsboro rallied from an early first-quarter deficit, but in the fourth quarter, Midway managed to pull away for a 64-59 win over the Cougars on Friday evening. Despite the loss, Tziah Kelly recorded her 1,000th career point.

“We played hard in spurts,” said Goldsboro head coach Latina Bullock-Thomas. “We just weren’t consistent with what we needed to do in order for us to stay on top.

“They were times we didn’t capitalize on their turnovers, and we just made more turnovers.”

The Cougars started off a little slow, and at the end of the first quarter, Goldsboro (12-4 overall) was down 12-7. In the second quarter, the Cougars started to wake up, the Cougars outscored the Raiders 19-14 and tied the game 26-26 at halftime.

In the third quarter, the Cougars stayed hot and going into the fourth quarter, they had a 46-36 lead. However, the Cougars played the entire fourth quarter without Kelly, who was injured late in the third quarter.

“The Midway coach made a statement that if Tziah doesn’t get hurt, the game would’ve been totally different,” said Bullock-Thomas

Goldsboro held a slim 50-46 lead when Victoria Royal drained in a three-pointer, but Midway refused to go away. The Raiders went on a 12-6 run to take a 58-56 lead with just under two minutes left to play.

After taking the lead, Midway led for the remainder of the game. Goldsboro was down 62-56 with 59 seconds remaining. The Cougars attempted to rally, but Midway knocked in a few free throws to win the game 64-59.

Kelly finished with 22 points for the Cougars, while Royal finished the night with 20 points. McKayla Roberts scored 10 points

“All I can do is encourage my players, and try to push them to play harder, and realize they can do it. This is just one game, and there are many more to be played,” said Bullock-Thomas.

The Cougars return to action when they host Kinston on Wednesday. Tipoff is 6 p.m.