Lady Tigers come up short at Tippecanoe


TIPP CITY – The trek to get to double digit in wins for Versailles girls was tripped up on Saturday afternoon by the long range specialists Tippecanoe Lady Red Devils, 51-47.

Tippecanoe survived an onslaught of 20 points in the fourth quarter by the Tigers, who only had 27 points for the first three quarters. The loss drops them down to 9-3 overall. The Red Devils, a perennial Division II power, held on for dear life as the Tigers comeback fell short at the end as a Lindsey Winner jumper went in and out on a purposely missed free throw on a one and bonus situation.. Tipp’s Lady Red Devils improve to 8-3 overall with more GWOC foes to conquer as their season gets over the halfway mark with this impressive win.

Versailles was led by senior Kelsey Custenborder, who recorded 18 points with 14 of them coming in the dramatic fourth quarter. Tippecanoe was led by sophomore Ashleigh Mader with 13 and junior Kendall Clodfelter with 11. Plenty of players pilfered the scoreboard with nine Tigers and eight Red Devils scoring.

The first quarter was a lot of runs with Versailles jumping out to a 6-0 lead at the 2:15 mark, then Tipp firing back with six of their own for a 6 all tie. Versailles reloaded by scoring six out of the next eight points for a 12-8 first quarter lead as Tiger nation roared their approval. Danielle Kunk led all Tigers in this frame with three followed by Winner, Custenborder and Brooke Stonebraker with a deuce. The Red Devils were led by Jillian Brown who had six out of their eight total with three regular buckets.

The second quarter showed a lot of ebb and flow for the first four minutes when Versailles and Tipp flipped the ball around the net for a 16-13 Tiger lead. The Red Devils tied it at the 3:32 mark at 16 apiece and never looked back by rattling off the next five points for an 8-0 run to end the quarter in fine fashion. The Lady Tigers had some shots that would just not fall in the last four minutes and more turnovers in the half than what they usually have in a game. This put the Tigers down but definitely not out at 21-16 entering intermission. Versailles had a total of four points, two apiece from Elizabeth Ording and Custenborder. Tippecanoe was led by Rachel Wildermuth with six on two long threes and Katie Salyer with 5, including a long range bomb.

Third quarter theatrics was more of the same and then some with the Red Devils taking Versailles out of its game offensively. They scored seven straight making it a 15-0 run going back to the second quarter to make it a 28-16 lead. The Tigers finally ended the drought at the 4:34 mark with a bucket. The Red Devil lead increased to 35-21 before Versailles retaliated with six straight to cut the deficit to 8 at 35-27.

Versailles was led by Stonebraker with four in the 11-point quarter while Tipp only topped in three more at 14. Tipp was led by Mader with six on a long three and three freebies followed closely again by Clodfelter’s four.

Four quarter fireworks had the Tigers almost pulling off a miraculous comeback as they were down 40-27 at the 7:01 mark as Tipp ripped off another five straight points to open up the frame. The lead went down to 43-36 at the 3:45 mark as hope still reigned eternal for a Tiger comeback. The comeback hopes shrunk even more however as the Red Devils moved up the lead to 49-41 with only 90 seconds to go. Then, the Tigers went on a 6-0 run of their own that put Tipp in a tailspin they would almost not come out of. They missed crucial free throws and had costly turnovers at the end to make the count now read 49-47 with 6.4 seconds left.

At this juncture Winner had already made one freebie then missed the second one on purpose and had the ball bounce fortunately back to her. This is where her 10-foot jumper went in and then came out much to the Tiger faithful chagrin. The Tigers had to foul with one tick left on the clock when Tipp nailed two free throws for the final four-point setback. Custenborder unloaded for 14 markers with 12 of those coming from long distance. Winner was next up with five counters as only three players scored this frame. Mader again came alive as all her points came in the second half by rattling in another seven followed closely by Clodfelter again with five.

”We need to come out with urgency the whole game and not just the last three minutes which we did today. We only average about 13 turnovers a game and we already had that by halftime. Tipp took us out of our game and we must learn to adjust as we are still a work in progress. We must get to the line more. We were passing first instead of shooting and we need to work it more inside. We now must regroup and play in the barn at New Knoxville on Thursday night,” stated Versailles coach Jacki Stonebraker.

Scoring for Tippecanoe – Mackenzie Smith 2, Brown 9, Brooke Aselage 3, Mader 13, Wildermuth 6, Clodfelter 11, Katie Hemmelgarn 2 and Salyer 5 for 51 points. 7 triples, nine regulars and 12 of 21 free throws for 57 percent.

Scoring for Versailles – Liz Watren 1, Caitlin McEldowney 2, Kunk 4, Toner 2, Ording 4, Winner 9, Caitlyn Luthman 1, Custenborder 18 and Stonebraker 6 for 47 points. 5 triples, 12 regulars and 8 out of 14 free throws for 57 percent.

By Ted Landis Jr.

For The Daily Advocate

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