RACINE, Ohio — From start to finish, it was the Lady Rebels’ night.
The South Gallia girls basketball team outscored Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division host Southern in each of the four quarters on Thursday night in Meigs County, as the Lady Rebels picked up their first league win of the season by a 43-25 count.
South Gallia (2-6, 1-5 TVC Hocking) hit seven field goals over the first eight minutes of play and led Southern (1-6, 1-5) by a 16-to-6 margin. The Lady Tornadoes’ best offensive quarter of the night was the second, in which they scored eight points. SGHS scored 10 points in the second, however, and headed into the half with a 26-14 lead.
South Gallia extended its lead to 33-18 headed into the finale, scoring five of its seven third quarter points from the charity stripe. Over the final eight minutes the Lady Rebels hit six free throws, closing out the 43-25 victory with a 10-7 run.
“Our defense played really well,” SGHS head coach Corey Small said. “It hasn’t been our defense that’s been the problem, it’s been our offense that’s been holding us back. Today, the ball started going through the bucket a little bit more and resulted in a win. Give credit to Southern, they played hard and they didn’t quit.”
For the game, the Lady Rebels held a 35-to-24 rebounding advantage, while winning the turnover battle by a 28-11 count. South Gallia collected seven steals in the win. As a team, Southern recorded eight assists.
From the free throw line, the Lady Rebels shot 17-of-32 (53.1 percent) and the Lady Tornadoes were 3-of-8 (37.5 percent).
“We had a couple good looks early and they didn’t go down,” SHS head coach David Kight said. “We’re still learning that if it doesn’t go early, that doesn’t mean it won’t go late. We didn’t hit the panic button, but we kind of had that deer in the headlights look for 2-or-3 minutes.”
SGHS senior Erin Evans hit the guests’ only three-pointer and led the victors with 16 points, coming on five field goals and five free throws. Olivia Hornsby and Amaya Howell scored eight points apiece for the Red and Gold, with Hornsby marking a team-best four steals.
Aaliyah Howell had six points for the Lady Rebels, while Christine Griffith recorded four points and a game-high 13 rebounds. Kiley Stapleton rounded out the winning total with one marker.
“This is one that should start a little run for us,” Small said of the win. “We’re playing good basketball and we’re going to start to get healthy next week. Hopefully we can continue the momentum and it leads to a streak of wins.”
SHS senior Shelbi Dailey led the hosts with six points on a trio of field goals. Phoenix Cleland and Paige VanMeter had five points apiece in the setback, with Cleland earning team-highs of eight rebounds and three assists.
Jaiden Roberts finished with four points, Baylee Wolfe and Bailee Floyd added two apiece, while Lauren Lavender scored one point. VanMeter and Roberts both sank a three-pointer in the contest.
“We could never string together 2-or-3 buckets and 2-or-3 stops,” Kight said. “When they see the ball go through the bucket, its a little bit of a boost, when its not, you kind of press a little bit. We’re going to take a few days and get back to some defensive principals.”
These teams are scheduled to meet again on Feb. 1 in Mercerville.
Both squads have one game left in 2017, as the Lady Tornadoes visit Sciotoville East on Dec. 28, and the Lady Rebels host Ohio Valley Christian on Dec. 29.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.
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