|Thu, Jul 24, 2014 12:29 AM
January 15, 2014 | 10:24 AM
Heading toward the final month of the regular season, the Corydon Central girls' basketball team picked up a 53-36 victory Thursday over visiting Eastern (Pekin).
One of the points of emphasis for Lady Panthers' skipper Michael Uhl was witnessing the passion his players brought forth.
"We talked about the intensity," Uhl said. "I was worried about us battling after the layoff. Sometimes we don't battle the way we should, but tonight we did. I'm happy with that."
The initial start of the game wasn't the prettiest for the Lady Panthers. Triples by Eastern's Bailey England gave the visitors a 6-0 lead in the Mid-Southern Conference dual.
It was five minutes into the contest before Corydon Central hit a field goal. The bucket by Ashley Oliver cut Eastern's lead to 9-5.
The defensive intensity picked up for the Lady Panthers. Following a 10-second back-court call, Corydon Central's Marie Rothrock capitalized with a 3-pointer. Another Lady Musketeers turnover followed, resulting in Aly Chambers finding Reagan Mosley for a field goal and Corydon Central's first lead, 10-9.
Eastern led 11-10 after the first eight minutes, but Corydon Central's defense continued to clamp down on its opponent. For 5-1/2 minutes of the second quarter, the Lady Musketeers failed to score. Keeping the ball from reaching the paint, Corydon Central was forcing multiple outside shots. The Lady Panthers also created six turnovers in the frame.
Offensively, Corydon Central built momentum. Off the bench, Shelby Wilkerson had five points in the quarter, including the first two field goals. Chambers was able to bury an outside shot, while Chelsea John added an old-fashioned 3-point play.
The 12-3 second-quarter run gave Corydon Central a 22-14 halftime edge.
"The emphasis was to take away the inside," Uhl said. "The high-low game with their post players is really good. Their point guard (Katie Ernstberger), I told our players, throwing (Bedford North Lawrence's Alexa) Bailey out, may be one of the better point guards south of Bloomington. She's a competitor."
Stretching the lead to double digits, Mosley stepped out to hit a 3-pointer in the early stages of the third quarter, giving her team a 27-17 edge.
Late in the third, Ernstberger and Bailey England combined for consecutive field goals, cutting Corydon Central's lead to 34-30.
To end the scoring in the frame, Wilkerson scored a 3-point play for the winners.
Scoring the first seven points of the fourth quarter, the Lady Panthers led by as many as 14 points before pulling away further.
The fourth quarter was lopsided, similar to the second, with the Lady Panthers winning the scoring battle, 16-6.
"To the girls, we said we have three halves, as a math teacher you shouldn't say that, but we have the run to our Christmas tournament, the next nine games, then the IHSAA tournament," Uhl said. "I told the girls tomorrow is the most important day of our season. You can't sit back and say, 'Wow' at this win. You have to keep working to get better."
It was balanced scoring once again that led Corydon Central. Chambers stuffed the stat line, leading the team with 12 points, along with five assists and four steals.
Rothrock and Mosley had 10 points each. Mosley had a team-high five rebounds. Wilkerson made all three of her field-goal attempts to reach eight points.
Eastern was led in scoring by nine points each from Brooke Rodewig and England.
Corydon Central will return to MSC play tomorrow (Thursday) when the Lady Panthers play at Silver Creek at 7:30 p.m. They'll also get a look at the newest addition to the Class 3A Charlestown Sectional when they play at No. 8 Madison on Saturday (1:30 p.m.).
The Lady Panthers will return home Tuesday to face rival North Harrison.
Eastern (Pekin) 11 3 16 6 – 36
Corydon Central 10 12 15 16 – 53
Eastern (Pekin) (7-5, 2-2 MSC)– England 9, Rodewig 9, Ernstberger 6, Drury 4, Feist 3, Hamilton 3, Stewart 2.
Corydon Central (8-5, 3-2) – Chambers 12, Rothrock 10, Mosley 10, Wilkerson 8, Oliver 6, John 3, Dagenhart 2, Fredrick 2.
3-point goals – Eastern (Pekin) 6 (England 3, Rodewig, Feist, Hamilton); Corydon Central 4 (Chambers 2, Rothrock, Mosley).