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Lady Tigers’ upset bid falls just short


Tribune Sports Editor


JACKSON — Team record meant nothing to the Ironton Lady Fighting Tigers, but some missed opportunities down the stretch meant everything.

A big underdog entering Saturday’s Division III sectional championship game, Ironton missed a couple of late chances in the fourth quarter and then lost 47-43 in overtime to the Lucasville Valley Lady Indians.

Ironton (6-16) was 9 of 11 from the foul line in the fourth quarter, but the two misses hurt along with a couple of key turnovers and missed shots from close range.

“I can’t be upset with these girls. They played very hard and they gave themselves a chance to win. That’s all you can ask for,” said Ironton coach Doug Graham.

“This group has worked really hard all year and they did a great job defensively. A break here or there and they’re in the district. But you have to give Valley a lot of credit. They’re a good team and (Whitney) Bear is a nice player.”

Bear — the Lady Indians’ all-time leading scorer — was held to just a field goal in the first half but scored 14 points in the second half to key the win.

Alicia Murphy had 18 points and 6 rebounds for Ironton while Ariel Schweickart scored 15 points including 12 in the second half. She converted 7 of 9 free throws attempts.

Karlee McMackin grabbed 11 rebounds for Ironton. McKenzie Coriell had 9 rebounds for Valley (18-4).

Bear hit one of two free throws to start the overtime only to have Murphy follow up a missed shot and give Ironton a 43-42 lead.

But McKenzie Coriell turned around and threw in a 3-pointer that gave Valley the lead for good at 45-43.

Bethany Conley sank two foul shots with 41 seconds left for a 47-43 lead and Ironton failed to connect on two final field goal attempts.

Ironton’s defense forced 10 turnovers in the first quarter and took a 10-6 lead.

Darby High banked in a 3-pointer and Taylor Skaggs banked in 12-footer to key a 7-0 run by Valley to start the second quarter and take a 13-10 lead.

Murphy’s trey put Ironton up 16-15 but Carrie Coriell had a layup and Bear hit a short jumper and the Lady Indians led 19-16 at the break.

Bear got hot in the third quarter and hit a pair of 3-pointers as she scored 9 points and Valley was up 29-18 midway through the quarter.

Schweickart scored 4 points and Lexie Washington had a put-back to cut the deficit to 29-24.

Conley’s layup and Bear’s 17-footer put Valley up 33-24 at the end of the quarter.

Murphy scored 6 straight points including a trifecta to get Ironton within 33-30 to begin the fourth quarter.

A 17-footer by Emily Davis and a 3-point play by Schweickart tied the game at 35-35 with 4:05 left.

Three free throws by Murphy and one by Schweickart put Ironton up 41-39 with 29 seconds on the clock.

Conley was fouled with 20 seconds left and missed both attempts, but Carrie Coriell got the rebound and scored to tie the game with 14 seconds left and send the game into overtime.

Ironton 10 6 8 17 2 = 43

Lucasville 6 13 14 8 6 = 47

IRONTON (6-16): Emily Davis 2 0 0-0 4, Ariel Schweickart 4 0 7-9 15, Karlee McMackin 1 0 2-2 4, Alicia Murphy 3 2 6-8 18, Lexie Washington 1 0 0-0 2, Saige Fields 0 0 0-0 0, Taylor Hanon 0 0 0-0 0, Jordan Leach 0 0 0-0 0, Macy Wise 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 13-49 15-19 43. 3-point goals: 2-10. Rebounds: 31 (McMackin 11, Murphy 6). Teams rebounds: 2. Turnovers: 15. Fouls: 15. Fouled out: None.

LUCASVILLE VALLEY (18-4): Courtney Crabtree 2 0 0-04, McKenzie Coriell 3 1 0-0 9, Whitney Bear 4 2 2-4 16, Bethany Conley 2 0 2-6 6, Carrie Coriell 2 0 1-2 5, Taylro Skaggs 2 0 0-0 4, Darby High 0 1 0-0 3. Totals: 19-46 5-12 47. 3-point goals: 4-11. Turnovers: 17. Fouls: 20. Fouled out: None.