BIDWELL, Ohio — Well, that escalated quickly.
It took the River Valley girls basketball team just 1:30 to turn a tie game into a double-digit lead at the beginning of the second half. The Lady Raiders never looked back and went on to defeat visiting Southern 71-52 Wednesday night.
The Lady Tornadoes (4-13) scored the first five points of the game but RVHS (4-12) closed the first period with a 20-to-7 run to take the eight point lead.
The Silver and Black offense struggled in the second quarter, amassing just eight points. Southern rallied for 16 points in the second and tied the game at 28 headed into the half.
The Lady Raiders found new life after halftime with a 1:30 10-0 run to start the third quarter. Overall RVHS out scored Southern 30-to-7 in the third period including an 11-0 spurt over the final 2:15.
The Purple and Gold found themselves trailing 58-35 at the start of the fourth but they cut the lead by eight points with a three-minute 10-to-2 run. RVHS sealed the victory with an 11-to-7 spurt that made the final score 71-52.
“We needed the win,” River Valley coach Renee Gilmore said. “Getting ready to go into tournaments all the wins we can get and the confidence we can get back into the girls its gonna be good for them.”
Cady Gilmore paced the Lady Raiders with a triple-double performance of 25 points, 16 assists and 13 rebounds. Leia Moore chipped in with 13 points, Courtney Smith added 12 and Tianna Qualls marked eight in the triumph. Chelsea Copley marked seven points, Rachael Smith had four and Justyce Stout closed out the RVHS scoring with two points.
Following Gilmore in the rebounding column were Qualls with eight and Moore with four. Courtney Smith added six assists, while Shalin Comer had five. Courtney Smith completed her double-double with 11 steals on the night, followed by Gilmore with five.
The Lady Raiders shot 7-of-11 (63.6 percent) from the charity stripe and 30-of-76 (39.5 percent) from the field, including 4-of-11 (36.4 percent) from beyond the arc. Gilmore drained a trio of three’s for the victors, while Moore made the other. As a team River Valley had 34 rebounds, 28 assists, 22 steals and 22 turnovers.The victory snaps River Valley’s two game skid.
Southern was led by Celestia Hendrix with 19 points, 15 of which came before halftime, and Jansen Wolfe with 10 points. Maggie Cummins had eight points, Jordan Huddleston marked seven, while Haley Hill and Kyrie Swann each added three. Shelby Pickens closed out the SHS scoring with two points on the night.
“We are getting better,”Southern head coach Scott Cleland said. “We are gonna take the positive things from this game and build on them.”
Wolfe paced the Lady Tornadoes on the glass with 12 rebounds, followed by Hendrix with eight and Hill with four. Swann, Hill and Wolfe each had three assists to lead SHS, while Huddleston’s trio of steals led the way. Wolfe had a game-high three blocked shots.
The Purple and Gold shot 8-of-15 (53.3 percent) from the line and 21-of-56 (37.5 percent) from the field, including 2-of-10 (20 percent) from long range. Cummins and Hill were responsible for the SHS triples. As a unit the Lady Tornadoes had 33 rebounds, 15 assists, 10 steals and 29 turnovers. The loss snaps Southerns two game win streak.
This marks the Lady Raiders second highest offensive output this season. The Silver and Black improve to 3-0 against Meigs County teams this year, while Southern is now 1-2 against Gallia County opponents.
This is the lone meeting between SHS and River Valley this season.