ANSONIA – Twin Valley South pulled away late in Thursday’s Cross County Conference girls basketball game to defeat Ansonia 59-43 on the Tigers’ senior night.
Ansonia erased an 8-point halftime deficit early in the third quarter, tying the game at 36-36 midway through the period, but from there South outscored Ansonia 23-7 to win by 16 points.
“I thought South shot the ball well,” Ansonia coach Jim Bolin said. “I thought they defended well. We would play well enough to catch up then we would take a break; that went on the whole game pretty much. We didn’t shoot the ball very good like we normally do. They got a couple good, quick guards, kind of negated my guards. It’s a tough loss for us.”
Neither team could gain much of an advantage early in Thursday’s game with the opening quarter ending with Twin Valley South holding a slight 16-14 lead. Trinity Henderson led Ansonia with 9 points in the quarter, which included a pair of 3-pointers while Kassy Wentworth added 3 points and Katie Werts scored 2.
Baskets from Heidi Runkel and Wentworth put Ansonia up 18-16 early in the second quarter. The Tigers also got points from Werts and Henderson in the period, but the Panthers finished the half on an 8-0 run to lead 32-24 at halftime.
Ansonia got off to a hot start in the third quarter with scoring from Millie Widener, Wentworth, Bailey Stammen and Werts. The Tigers scored 12 of the first 16 points in the quarter to knot the score at 36-36 with 4:37 remaining in the period.
However, Ansonia was unable to retake the lead as Twin Valley South finished the third quarter on a 7-2 run to lead 43-38. The Panthers then broke the game open in the fourth quarter as they won 59-43.
“We had played hard enough to catch back up then we’d just take a break,” Bolin said. “You can’t do that, especially against a team with two good guards. And they executed well. We did a lot of stuff to ourselves about the whole game. They just came in and beat us on our home floor. They deserved to win.”
Henderson led Ansonia with 11 points on Thursday. Also for the Tigers, Wentworth scored 9 points, Werts scored 9, Widener scored 6, Stammen scored 4, Runkel scored 2, and Kierra Reichert scored 2.
Mylan Crews led Twin Valley South with a game-high 17 points. Also for the Panthers, Kelsie Shafer scored 16 points, McKenzie Neal scored 10, Madison Johnson scored 9, Taylor Bowers scored 4, and Abby Bingham scored 3.
Ansonia dropped to 5-15 overall and 3-8 in the CCC with Thursday’s loss.
Prior to the game, Ansonia honored its three seniors: Stammen, Werts and Wentworth.
“I’ve had them since I’ve been here,” Bolin said. “Bailey Stammen, I can’t say enough about her. She’s just a nice young lady and a really good athlete, good competitor. And I’ve got Katie, another good guard. She’s just a great kid, a real intelligent girl. She’s a great guard, great competitor. You can’t find anybody that competes more than she does. Then Millie, she’s battled a lot of medical issues with her back ever since she’s been a freshman. I think if it wouldn’t have been for that we could have really done some things for her. But she’s fought through that and she’s stayed dedicated to the basketball team. We’re going to miss them.”
Ansonia has two more games left in the regular season. The Tigers will return to action on Saturday at Parkway.
“We’ve got two ball games left,” Bolin said. “Just got to get in the gym, get after it and go from there.”
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.