FORT LORAMIE – Versailles suffered its first loss of the 2016-17 girls basketball season on Thursday, losing 43-39 at Fort Loramie.
Thursday’s game was close throughout with neither team leading by more than 6 points until the final minute when Fort Loramie briefly went up by 7. Even though Loramie didn’t lead by much, it was enough to control the game and force Versailles to play from behind most of the night.
“They outplayed us,” Versailles coach Jacki Stonebraker said. “They outmuscled us. They did everything that I wanted to do to them.”
Versailles’ biggest lead of the night was just 2 points, a feat the Tigers achieved early on with a 2-0 advantage. Fort Loramie then went on a 7-0 run, but Versailles closed out the quarter with a 7-4 stretch to close to within 2, 11-9, by the end of the opening period.
The second quarter was as close as could be with the score being within 2 points the entire period. Both teams scored 10 points in the stanza, and Loramie entered halftime up 21-19.
Points continued to be hard to come by in the third quarter with Versailles only scoring 8, but that was enough to cut the deficit to a single point, 28-27, as Fort Loramie only managed 7.
Even though the game was physical, there only were eight total fouls called in the first 24 minutes – five on Fort Loramie and three on Versailles. Loramie’s physicality was able to slow down Versailles.
“Even bunny shots were a struggle for us,” Stonebraker said. “They contacted us, stuff we don’t like in the post. We don’t like to get contacted, and that adjusted our shot and made us miss. There were a lot of shots rimmed out.”
Versailles managed to go up 33-32 two minutes into the fourth quarter, but that was the final lead of the night for the Tigers as Loramie scored the next 6 points to take a lead it never surrendered. The home team led by as much as 7, 42-35, with less than 40 seconds remaining and held on for the 43-39 victory.
“They were disappointed,” Stonebraker said of her team. “That’s one of our goals every year, is to beat Loramie. We’ve got it in our locker room: Beat Loramie. But it’s not the regional championship. It’s not the district championship. It’s not for a MAC championship. It’s a team that makes us better. It’s a team we should beat, but we can’t take any team lightly.”
Elizabeth Ording led Versailles with a game-high 14 points. Also for the Tigers, Danielle Winner scored 9 points, Kami McEldowney scored 6, Clair Schmitmeyer scored 4, Kami Ording scored 3, and Ellen Peters scored 3.
Sara Stang led Fort Loramie with 12 points, Taylor Ratermann scored 8, Reyan Frey scored 7, Kaitlyn Luebke scored 5, Hattie Meyer scored 5, and Brooke Raterman scored 4.
Versailles fell to 10-1 with Thursday’s loss while Fort Loramie improved to 6-3.
Versailles now is off until Jan. 5 when it will play host to Parkway in a Midwest Athletic Conference game.
“We’ve just got to wait a whole week to play, and that’s tough to sit on a loss like we are,” Stonebraker said.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.