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Lady Eagles nab first win for coach

Lady Eagles nab first win for coach
Lady Eagles nab first win for coach
LanesvilleÂ’s Ashley Schoen, right, and teammate Drue Stewart trap Christian Academy of IndianaÂ’s Gretchen Wolfe in the backcourt during ThursdayÂ’s contest. Photo by Brian Smith (click for larger version)

The Lanesville girls’ basketball team escaped New Albany Thursday night with its first win of the season, a 59-48 decision over Christian Academy of Indiana.
The win, backed by three players reaching double-figure scoring, was the first for coach Madeline Richards.
‘Words can’t explain the morale pickup of a win,’ Richards said. ‘Getting a win helps our team confidence. As a coach, it is a great feeling to get that first one, but the main thing is the team gets better each game out. So far, looking at the first three games, we are doing that.’
Lanesville created scoring opportunities in the first half off of forcing 12 turnovers. In the half-court set, the Lady Eagles also moved the ball around the CAI zone, settling for quality shots.
‘We’re working on swinging the ball from side to side in practice,’ Richards said. ‘We were trying the fake- and-make, and making better choices when making passes. If you’re a 100 percent sure the ball can get there, throw it; if not, look elsewhere. Overall, it was better ball handling.’
Lanesville went on a 9-0 run during the midway portion of the first quarter to build a 13-6 lead. Four different Lady Eagles chipped in on the first quarter scoring, eventually closing with a 16-10 advantage.
At the start of the second quarter, Lanesville converted a pair of 3-point plays to extend the lead to 10. Ashley Schoen and Rachel Riley were fouled on made field goals and then made each foul shot.
The close of the half had a wacky final 6.2 seconds. CAI’s Stephanie Combs converted an old-fashioned 3-point play to cut Lanesville’s lead to 30-22. On the ensuing drive, Emma Bays sprinted up court and dished the ball to Erica Daly, who was fouled on a made basket with 1.2 seconds remaining. Daly missed her free-throw attempt, but Schoen collected her eighth rebound of the half. Schoen was fouled on her put-back attempt and eventually made both free throws to stretch the lead to 34-22 at the break.
‘Against the zone, we brought the ball up and patiently moved the ball around and had some nice shots,’ Richards said. ‘From a zone offense perspective, we did a pretty good job, even through the second half.’
Lanesville came out in the third quarter to extend the lead further. Kayla Smith knocked down consecutive 3-pointers during the early stages. Off the bench, Shelbie Timberlake scored seven consecutive points, growing the lead to 50-32 at the end of the third quarter.
A cold spell came over the Lady Eagles in the fourth quarter as CAI roared back. They went on a 15-2 run during the first six minutes of the final frame. Combs made a pair of free throws at the 2:00 mark to trim Lanesville’s lead to 52-47.
The Lady Eagles were able to regain momentum on offense when Smith broke the run with a field goal. Down the stretch, Lanesville hit five free throws to ice the game.
‘These girls made it exciting,’ Richards said. ‘The thing we have been working on from the first two games is handling pressure. Those games, it was rough at times, but, when pressure came at us, we responded well. We were rattled but focused and handled the pressure and closed the game out.’
Schoen finished with a team best 14 points and 13 rebounds for Lanesville (1-2). Timberlake chipped in 11 points, followed by Smith’s 10. Brooklynn Keinsley and Riley scored eight each.
‘Ashley rebounded well and came away with some big plays,’ Richards said. ‘Shelbie Timberlake came in and made some key shots. Everyone came in and played well as a team. I’m really proud of this win.’
CAI (2-3) was paced by Combs, who made 12 of 15 free throws and had 22 points.
Lanesville will return to the floor Monday when the team travels to Perry Central.