A pair of Jackson County schools opened tournament play Tuesday in the Class A Sectional 62 at West Washington.
Unfortunately for Crothersville and Medora, both teams saw their seasons come to a close, as both were eliminated from postseason play.
Tigers fall to Hilltoppers
Crothersville’s girls basketball team nearly pulled off a comeback against Shawe Memorial in the early game.
Despite pulling within one point in the final ticks of the clock, the Tigers (13-10) fell to the Hilltoppers 54-52.
In the opening quarter, the teams played it close.
While the Hilltoppers hit four 3-pointers in the opening eight minutes of play, the Tigers would answer.
Kate Grote hit back-to-back 3-pointers to give Shawe a 6-2 lead with 5:38 on the clock before a basket by Makayla Helt and a free throw from Tayler Brewer brought the Tigers back within a point.
Three-pointers from Phoebe Grote and Erin Cooper put the Hilltoppers up 14-9 before a 5-0 run by the Tigers knotted the game at 14 at the end of eight minutes of play.
In the first five minutes of the second quarter, the Hilltoppers went on a 10-0 run behind four different scorers.
Tigers coach Kevin Hensley then took a timeout, and the Tigers refound their offense.
A basket by the Tigers’ Grace Wilson halted the drought, and five straight points by Maddie Riley cut the deficit to 26-21 at intermission.
Out of the break, the Hilltoppers went on a 6-2 run to go up 32-23 with 5:53 left in the third quarter.
Six straight points by Brewer and a field goal from Wilson cut the Hilltoppers’ lead to 37-31 with 3:16 on the clock.
The Tigers found themselves in foul trouble toward the end of the third quarter, picking up a seventh foul at the 3:10 mark.
A score from Brewer, a 3-pointer by Riley and free throws from Piper Hensley brought the score to 48-43, but the Hilltoppers’ Kate Grote hit a half-court 3-pointer to put Shawe up 46-38 at the end of 24 minutes.
Both teams turned the ball over five times in the first 4:10 of the fourth quarter.
A 3-pointer by Hensley and a basket from Brewer cut the Hilltoppers’ lead to 50-43 with 4:44 left in the game.
With 3:49 to go, coach Hensley called another timeout.
Out of the huddle, the Tigers scored three straight to bring the score to 50-46 before Shawe called a timeout with 2:50 remaining.
A pair of free throws from Hensley and Riley and a basket by Helt brought the Tigers within reach at 53-52 with 12.5 seconds left.
The Tigers would get a chance at taking the lead, but on an offensive putback with one second left, Brewer was called for an over-the-back to give Shawe the ball back.
Shawe split free throws with a tick left on the clock to seal the win.
“I was proud of the effort, but I was eating myself up,” coach Hensley said. “I didn’t think I had them prepared enough for this game. A coach can preach and preach about different situations in practice, but in a game, it’s a completely different atmosphere. I knew Shawe would come in fired up, and they would take it to another level. We didn’t start out that way. We waited too late.”
Kate Grote led the Hilltoppers with 23 points, and Brewer led the Tigers with 22 points.
The Tigers won the rebounding margin 33-25 and turnover deficit 23-21.
Kaitlyn Silvers, the Tigers’ lone senior, will graduate from the program.
“We return a lot of talent,” coach Hensley said. “We have a great nucleus coming back.”
Lancers blow out Hornets
Edinburgh busted open a 27-point lead after eight minutes of play and never looked back in a 70-25 win against Medora in the late game of the Sectional 62 quarterfinals.
The Lancers (10-13) opened the game on a 13-0 run behind a pair of 3-pointers from Destiny Ramey.
A pair of free throws by Kailen Flynn stopped the bleeding for Medora (3-17), but those shots proved the only points for the Hornets in the first quarter.
In the final 4:30 of the quarter, the Lancers scored 16 unanswered points. In that stretch, five different players scored to give the Lancers a 29-2 advantage at the end of eight minutes of play.
Following back-to-back baskets from Paige Burton, Medora’s Gwyneth Morris hit a 3-poitner to bring the score to 33-5 with 6:23 left in the half.
After trading a pair of baskets, the Lancers outscored the Hornets 7-2 in the final 1:27 of the first half to lead 44-14 at the break.
In the first half, seven different Lancers scored, and 12 players — the entire listed roster — took to the floor. Ramey led the charge for Edinburgh with 16 points on four 3-pointers.
Out of intermission, the Lancers went on an 8-2 run to lead 52-15 with 4:04 left in the third quarter.
Following a basket by Medora’s Lillie Hatfield, the Lancers went on a 9-0 run in the final 3:31 to lead 61-17.
Edinburgh outscored Medora 9-8 in the final eight minutes of play in cruising to the win.
Ramey led the Lancers with 20 points, Haven Link added 14 and Trinity Tatlock scored 11.
Hatfield topped the Hornets with eight points.
“They did a good job of putting defensive pressure on us and taking us out of what we wanted to run,” Hornets coach Brad McCammon said. “They were able to run the court well and had good shot selection. We struggled shooting the ball. I thought after the big win at home (Monday), we would shoot the ball better. We played Friday, Saturday, Monday and (Tuesday). We lost our legs a little bit.”
The Lancers won the rebounding margin 46-24 and turnover battle 22-11.
Marsadeez Phillips, Breanna Pfeiffer, Katie Beesley and Hatfield will all graduate from the Hornets’ program.
“The seniors are great kids,” McCammon said. “I told them that there is more to life than basketball. They’re a special group of kids, and I’m going to miss them. The seniors, on and off the court, have given so much to the community and the school. It’s tough when it’s final for those seniors. There are lessons in life and ups and downs, but I told them they have a lot of things to look forward to. I told them to focus on the victories on and off the court. I’m honored to be a part of their lives.”
The Lancers will face Trinity Lutheran in the second game of the semifinals Friday evening following the West Washington-Shawe Memorial contest.