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Lanesville runs out of steam vs. SC

In the championship game of the their own holiday tournament on Dec. 20, Lanesville’s girls basketball proved it could play with South Central for a quarter.
On Saturday night, the Lady Eagles owned South for nearly the entire game and almost pulled off a huge upset. Were it not for a 3-18 shooting in the third quarter, Lanesville might have won its first game over the Lady Rebels since Jan. 11, 2000, when they pulled off a 59-45 home win.
Since then, South’s run off 10 straight victories over its rival, including Saturday’s 59-57 Southern Athletic Conference barn-burner between the last two undefeated teams in league play.
‘We just played back on our heels. We let Lanesville do whatever they wanted to do,’ Lady Rebels coach Randall Schoen said. ‘The score was 17-11, and we had just come out of a time-out and had just talked about what set we were going to run. And as soon as we came down the floor, (Melissa) Biesel asked what are we in. That’s just showed where our heads were at in this thing and for the most part, the whole game.’
Lanesville (6-7, 2-1) set the tone early, going up 10-3 on a pair of triples by Maegan VanHoose and Heather Schaefer and two deuces by Allison Horton. The Lady Eagles led 17-9 at the end of the first period.
‘I think the kids had a lot of confidence in themselves this week,’ Lanesville skipper Tim Coomer said. ‘You have to come out here and play that way the whole game. That’s the way we have to play every game. You have to come out of the gate playing with that intensity.’
Rikki Abbott scored four of her game-high 19 points in the early going of the second quarter, but Schaefer had a personal seven-point outburst to keep Lanesville ahead. She scored 10 of her 13 points in the first half.
South sophomore Sarah Pease sank two frees, Lindsay Haag knocked down a freebie, and Samantha Troutman hit a field goal to bring the Lady Rebels to within six, 26-20, with just over a minute left in the half.
VanHoose converted the old-fashioned three-point play, and Samantha Johnson hit inside to keep the hosts ahead at the intermission, 31-22.
‘I felt like Schaefer was having a career night on us, so we had to make a switch to slow her down a little bit. We just went back to what had worked for us in the past,’ Schoen said.
The two clubs swapped baskets through much of the third period, with Johnson’s bucket at 4:37 keeping Lanesville ahead by nine, 40-31.
South (10-5, 2-0) held Lanesville without a field goal the rest of the frame as Abbott and Troutman got hot from three-point land and Haag picked up a score inside for two of her three points. The trio helped post a 13-4 run to tie the game at 44 heading into the final stanza.
After swapping free throws and field goals, VanHoose hit a three to give Lanesville a 53-49 advantage with 2:29 to play. Shannon Bruner had an old-fashioned three to cut it to one, and Pease hit the first two of six free throws she made in the quarter to give South a lead it wouldn’t relinquish.
Lanesville’s Johnson had a goal inside, followed by two more Pease free throws, and Horton scored at the buzzer to set the final score at 59-57.
Pease was 8-10 at the foul stripe, including 6-8 in the fourth quarter, and finished with 10 points.
‘She missed a couple of big ones, but she came through for us there at the end,’ Schoen said.
Abbott scored 19 for the winners and Troutman pitched in 18. Bruner added eight, including six in the second half.
‘Give Lanesville a lot of credit. They did a nice job against us, and we were lucky to get out of here with a win,’ Schoen added.
The Lady Rebels were 16 of 51 from the floor and hit 23 of 33 foul shots. The club squeaked out a 45-41 rebound advantage.
Lanesville, paced by Horton’s career-high 16 points, shot 21 of 64 from the field and was 6-19 on threes and 9-15 at the line.
VanHoose scored 12 and had three threes; Johnson scored eight, and Shelby Acton put in six points. Ashleigh Melton put in two points.
Coomer showered his team with accolades despite the loss.
‘A lot of times when you are young, you get impatient at crunch time. I’m really proud of the kids. The way we got beat the first two times we played them this year, the kids showed some real spunk about them tonight,’ Coomer said. ‘Every kid that stepped on the floor for us did something positive. Every single one of them.
‘We were short-handed tonight because (Brittany) Mix was out with a shoulder injury, so everything that was got was important. That’s what we’ve been waiting on, for these kids to step up.’
Coomer said the mood in his locker room was mixed.
‘I think there were a couple of heads down, but for the most part I think they felt a lot better about themselves after the way we played in the first two games against them this year. They came out and played them even, and I thought we should have won. We can play with this team,’ Lanesville coach said.
And if they should meet again?
‘After three losses this season, I hope my girls want it more than I do.’