BIDWELL, Ohio — One quarter made all the difference.
The River Valley girls basketball team broke away from a 28-all tie at halftime with a pivotal 17-5 third period surge and eventually cruised to a 54-45 victory over visiting Wellston on Wednesday night in a Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division matchup in Gallia County.
The Lady Raiders (6-13, 2-8 TVC Ohio) trailed 13-7 midway through the opening period and found themselves in their largest hole of the game at 25-18 with 2:23 remaining in the second quarter, but the hosts countered with a 10-3 surge and ended up tying things up at 28-all at the intermission.
The Lady Rockets (5-15, 0-11) twice held 2-point leads early in the third stanza, but Brooklin Clonch broke a 32-all tie with a basket that ultimately resulted in a permanent RVHS lead with 4:50 remaining.
The Silver and Black, who trailed 32-30 a minute earlier, eventually reeled off 15 straight points before a Madison Potts free throw with 33 seconds left pushed the Lady Raider advantage out to 45-33 headed into the finale.
WHS — which went 5-of-24 from the field after halftime — was never closer than seven points the rest of the way, despite making a 12-9 run down the stretch to complete the 3-possession outcome.
The Lady Rockets led 15-12 after one quarter of play. RVHS secured its largest lead of the night at 54-41 on a Kallie Burger free throw with 1:13 left in regulation.
The Lady Raiders also picked up a season sweep after claiming a 54-36 decision at Wellston back on Dec. 9, 2021.
River Valley outrebounded the guests by a 41-34 overall margin, including a 21-12 edge on the offensive glass. WHS committed 14 of its 25 turnovers in the first half, while the hosts had only six of their 16 miscues after the break.
RVHS made 17-of-63 field goal attempts for 27 percent, including a 7-of-31 effort from behind the arc for 23 percent. The hosts also made 13-of-24 free throw attempts for 54 percent.
Lauren Twyman led the Lady Raiders with a game-high 18 points, followed by Haylee Eblin with 13 points and Burger with seven markers. Burger also hauled in a game-best 10 rebounds.
Carlee Manley and Savannah White were next with five points each, while Morissa Barcus and Clonch respectively completed the winning mark with four and two markers. Barcus and White also grabbed six boards apiece.
The Lady Rockets made 13-of-45 shot attempts for 29 percent, including a 5-of-20 effort from 3-point territory for 25 percent. The guests sank 14-of-25 charity tosses as well for 56 percent.
Potts paced WHS with 13 points and Lauren Cheatham followed with 12 markers. Jenna Johnston also reached double digits in the setback with 11 points.
Both Johnston and Cheatham pulled down nine caroms each in the setback.
Weather permitting, the Lady Raiders are slated to host South Gallia at noon Saturday in a non-conference matchup.
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Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.