Following a blowout win against Jasper, the Seymour girls basketball team had its hands full with Class 4A No. 10 Carmel in Pete Pritchett Holiday Tournament play Tuesday.
The Owls defeated Jasper 66-45 and were able to get within four points in the fourth quarter before falling to Carmel 49-37.
Against Carmel, the Owls’ offense struggled in the opening quarter as they recorded four points while giving up 13.
Back-to-back baskets by Seymour freshman Makenna Fee cut Carmel’s lead to 18-15 at the 4:41-mark in the second quarter.
The Owls went on a 6-0 run behind one 3-pointer by Morgan Ritz, before the half as they trailed 22-14.
Carmel made its presence known in the paint early, led by the efforts of 6-foot-3 sophomore Blake Smith.
The Greyhounds would out-rebound Seymour 36-32 behind Smith’s seven boards.
“Their length played a large role in everything they,” Owls coach Jason Longmeier said. “I don’t think their press hurt us today, but it hurried us in the half court. I thought they were more patient then us in the half court, and had more offensive rebounds — and that was the difference in the game.”
Both teams battled back and forth in the third quarter, but Carmel led by 10 heading into the final eight minutes of play.
Seymour climbed back midway through the fourth quarter, at 41-37 with 2:55 remaining, when Ritz drilled a pair of deep 3-pointers.
Carmel ran near a minute off the clock and did not allow another point in the game as it came away with a victory.
Ritz led the Owls with 11 points, and Fee added nine.
Emily Kmec topped the Greyhounds’ scoring with 19 points, and Andi Kwasniewski tallied 12.
“At no point did we feel sorry for ourselves or feel like we were out of the game,” Longmeier said. “Last year, we had the ball at the end of the game to win it. Once we cut it to four, we had a poor defensive possession where they ran time off the clock. We expect to be in these types of games, we just need to find a better way to close out and win those games.”
In the earlier game, against Jasper, the Owls jumped to a 20-5 lead in the first quarter behind three 3-pointers by Ritz.
At half, Seymour led 34-22 against the Wildcats.
The Owls outscored Jasper 12-11 in the third quarter before tallying 20 points in the final eight minutes.
Kayla Griffin recorded a double-double for the Owls with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
Maci Lubker and Ritz were next for Seymour with 14 points each.
Nicolette Eckert had 12 points to lead Jasper.
“Defensively, we were so-so,” Longmeier said. “We played OK defensively but did a good job offensively from the start.”
Today, the Owls (11-3) will finish the round-robin holiday tournament with a game against Providence at 6 p.m. at Bedford North Lawrence High School.
Longmeier expects his team to come back with strong play and put big numbers up against the Pioneers.
“(Providence) is going to press and zone us the whole time,” he said. “We told the girls that we’re going to come over and light it up. If we come out and execute — it could be a big day for us.”