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Lady Pack smothers Eastern

After being stuck in a low offensive gear for the first few games of the season, Crawford County’s girls’ basketball team finally found a higher gear and quickly put away the visiting Lady Musketeers of Eastern Wednesday night, making for a much more enjoyable Thanksgiving for coach Eric Toney and his team.
‘I enjoyed this game,’ Toney said after his team’s lopsided 68-31 win.
‘The girls had fun tonight, and I had fun watching them.’
Crawford put the game away early with some hefty defense, and with offense coming from all over the floor, as Marissa Summers scored six inside and Kacey and Kelci Cox canned long jumpers.
By the end of the first eight minutes, the Lady Pack dominated with a 20-4 lead, and at halftime Crawford’s advantage ballooned to 30-8.
‘Tonight, I was really pleased with how we moved the ball,’ Toney said. ‘We were more patient and more relaxed. After we made five or six passes, we usually got a good shot. They didn’t always go in, but we got a lot of good perimeter shooting tonight.
‘We have good shooters, but when you’re not patient and you rush things and you don’t have your feet under you, they just don’t go in very well. Tonight, we made some strides in attacking the other team’s defense and being patient about it.’
The Lady Pack had their biggest quarter in the third, as they went on a 26-10 run. Chelsea Barron drilled a pair of three-balls for Crawford, and bench player Lauren Schaftlein added a pair of deuces from inside.
Crawford’s bench got some extended playing in the fourth quarter, as the Lady Pack rolled for the 37-point win.
‘There was a lot of scoring late, but at the half (Eastern) had eight points,’ Toney said. ‘At the end of the third quarter, they had 16. We have a very good defensive average right now. We really want to focus on that, because even when your offense is struggling, as it has been, we’re still winning. Our defense was very difficult to score against.’
Eight Crawford players scored with Shelby Holt coming off the bench to lead the way with 14 and Barron adding 12. The Lady Pack canned 13 of 19 free throws and committed 16 turnovers.
‘Kelci Cox, who doesn’t score much, hit two or three nice little jumpers,’ Toney said of his senior, who finished with seven points. ‘She’s a good shooter, but she’s got to have time. In past games, we never gave her any time because our offense was not patient.
‘Kacey (seven points) had good shots that didn’t go in, but they weren’t rushed like they normally were. Chelsea Barron is an excellent outside shooter, and she hit several tonight. Marissa had some nice shots. Marissa (eight points) is more comfortable from outside than in, but she finished some inside plays tonight against big people.’
Stephenie Eubank finished with seven points to lead the Lady Musketeers. Eastern connected on 10 of 16 free throws and turned over the ball 28 times.
Crawford junior Roxanne Koop was back on the bench in uniform and with a new knee brace. Toney said he expects her to return in the next few weeks to give the Lady Pack some added depth.
‘We got good play from Lauren Schaftlein,’ Toney said. ‘She had several points tonight. I tell her, ‘Use your athleticism. Just play hard. You’ll get garbage baskets,’ and she did.
‘Shelby played pretty well most of the game. Seven people is not too bad. An eighth person would be better, and that’s where Roxanne, hopefully, will come in.’
When asked if his team is in need of a big test, Toney said those tests will come soon enough.
‘After Silver Creek, we’ve got Perry Central on the road,’ he said. ‘Dubois will be a good test. Southridge, we’ve got them on the road, and that will be a major test.
‘If we play really good defense, we’ll be in those games against tough opponents. If our offense is able to click a little bit better, like we did tonight, I feel confident we can compete against anybody. I can’t guarantee we can win every game.
‘Very smart coaches have said if you can win at home and half of them on the road, you’re in pretty good shape. We hope to be able to do that.’