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Foul trouble hurts Lady Pointers

LANCASTER — The pressure-cooker became more of a tourniquet.

Plagued with foul trouble that caused their pressure-style of defense to go on and off, the South Point Lady Pointers fell to the Sugarcreek Garaway Lady Pirates 39-31 Wednesday in the Division III regional semifinals.

Coach Dave Adams said the Lady Pointers game is to create offense with turnovers, but South Point had just two fastbreak baskets due to turnovers.

“Our pressure was good at times. We got in foul trouble which is why we couldn’t keep pressure on them all the time,” said Adams.

“If you can’t get pressure on them, that allows them to run clock and it puts more pressure on you to convert on every possession because you don’t get many chances.”

Chances were few and hard to come by.

Both teams had seven turnovers in the first quarter as they struggled against each other’s defenses. As for shooting, South Point attempted only 32 shots and Garaway just 20.

While the Lady Pointers were 11-of-32, Garaway was 10-of-20 but 18-of-27 from the foul line. South Point was 7-of-8 at the line.

“They were physical with us and they have a ton of experience playing in the regionals. We’re so young,” said Adams.

Garaway led just 8-6 as the first quarter drew to a close, but Laura Bardall fired up an off-balance 35-footer at the buzzer that swished the nets to make it 11-6.

“We had battled and kept it even and then they hit that three at the end of the quarter.

But we were never out of it,” said Adams.

A basket off the baseline by T’Ann Mayo got South Point with 16-11, but Tinesha Taylor went to the bench moments later with three fouls.

After Jalynn Bradburn followed up her own miss to cut the deficit to 16-13, Ericka Leighty picked up her third foul.

Kenzie Kaufman scored four points to stretch the Lady Pirates led to 20-13. Bradburn got a layup off a nice pass from Morgan Kelley and it was 20-15 at the half.

Kaufman came off the bench to score nine points in the quarter.

“Defensively, we did what we wanted to do. We played Bardall pretty well. We knew what 44 (Kaufman) would do, we just didn’t get help quick enough.”

Bardall made two layups to start the second half and stretch the lead to 24-15 at the 6:25 mark. Bradburn and Leighty answered with layups to make it 24-19.

Bardall’s layup off a pass from Erica Hershberger made it 26-19, but Kayla Fletcher banked in a 3-pointer from the top of the key and South Point trailed just 26-22 with 2:48 left in the quarter.

Kaufman converted a three-point play and Bradall sank two foul shots for a 31-22 lead. Mayo hit two foul shots with no time on the clock and it was 31-24 going into the fourth quarter.

Leighty made two foul shots and Taylor, who returned with four fouls, got a layup off a Fletcher assist and South Point was down 33-28.

Bradburn hit both ends of a one-and-one at the 1:51 mark to cut the deficit to 34-30, but Garaway’s keep-away offense forced more South Point fouls and the Lady Pirates converted 5-of-6 free throws to seal the win.

Mayo and Bradburn scored eight points each to lead South Point. Bardall had 15 points and Kaufman 12 for the Lady Pirates (23-2).

South Point ends the season 17-7.

“Our seniors — Mayo, (Tara) Bailey and Kelley — have been with us the whole time so it feels good for them to make it here,” said Adams.

In the first game, Oak Hill beat Wheelersburg 63-55 to reach Saturday’s 1 p.m. regional championship game against Garaway.

Garaway119118=39

South Point6997=31

SUGARCREEK GARAWAY (23-2): Laura Bardall 4 1 4-6 15, Erica Hershberger 0 0 4-5 4, Kristen Troyer 0 0 1-2 1, Katie Hall 1 0 3-4 5, Sarah Bardall 0 0 0-2 0, Kenzi Kaufman 3 0 6-8 12, Trish Seilhamer 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 10-20 18-27 39. 3-point goals: 1-2. Fouls: 13. Fouled out: None. Rebounds: 4 offense, 13 defense, 2 team. Total rebounds: 19 (L. Bardall 7, Kaufman 5). Assists: 8 (Hershberger 5, Troyer 2). Steals: 10 (Hershberger 4, L. Bardall 2). Turnovers: 20.

SOUTH POINT (17-7): T’Ann Mayo 1 1 3-4 8, Kayla Fletcher 1 1 0-0 5, Ericka Leighty 2 0 2-2 6, Jalynn Bradburn 3 0 2-2 8, Tinesha Taylor 2 0 0-0 4, Morgan Kelley 0 0 0-0 0, Tara Bailey 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 11-32 7-8 31. 3-point goals: 2-11. Fouls: 23. Fouled out: Mayo (4th 0:13). Rebounds: 5 offense, 10 defense, 3 team. Total rebounds: 18 (Bradburn 6, Taylor 4). Assists: 4 (Fletcher 3). Steals: 6 (Fletcher 4). Turnovers: 21.