Lady Jackets fall to Ashville in area tournament final

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By Chris McCarthy/Editor

The Glencoe High girls basketball team’s quest for a second straight area title came up short on Thursday (Feb. 5), as the Lady Yellow Jackets lost to Ashville, 59-38, in the Class 3A, Area 11 Tournament championship game at GHS.

The Lady Yellow Jackets (17-14) travel to the winner of the Piedmont/Pleasant Valley game in Monday’s subregional round.

The hosts had difficulty all night against the Lady Bulldogs (20-7), pressure defense, as Ashville’s half-court trap led to numerous points off turnovers.

Glencoe was within 11 points at halftime, but the Lady Jackets’ shooting woes prevented them from putting together a sustained run in the second half. The hosts managed just one field goal during the third quarter as the visitors pulled away with a 48-28 lead.

The Lady Yellow Jackets got no closer than 16 points in the final eight minutes. 

“We played uncharacteristically nervous,” said Glencoe head coach Yvette Sparks. “The girls were looking forward to a repeat, and that caused us to have some anxiety about this game. We didn’t rebound well and turned the ball over way too much. I don’t feel like we ever relaxed and played loose like we did against Westbrook (in the tournament semifinals).

“Ashville played with a lot of urgency on defense, and that hurt us. We carried the ball over our heads a little too much, and [Ashville] has long arms and athletic bodies and were able to key in on the passes that we were telegraphing. When we were down by 11 points, I thought that we had some scoring to do and some stops to make and we’ll be there, but it never happened.”

Ashville held a 25-12 edge in rebounding.

Karly Royal led Glencoe with 12 points, while Maddie Osborne had nine. 

Nikki Moss scored 22 points for Ashville, followed by Anika Bothwell and Lasondra Looney with nine each.

“I think our defense tonight was the best we’ve played all year,” said Ashville head coach Dale Beason. “We talked about having to take care of the ball and rebound, make our passes and blocked out on free throws, and everything we talked about, the girls did. We had a good first half that set the tone and followed that up with a good third quarter. Glencoe has a real good inside game, and I thought that Nikki and Anika and Hannah (Ashley) did a good job in the post.”

Glencoe’s only lead of the night was at 3-2 on Royal’s three-point basket one minute into the contest. Ashville led 9-3 and 11-5 in the first quarter before the Lady Yellow Jackets drew within 15-11.

The Lady Bulldogs opened the second period with a 7-0 run and went into halftime up 31-22.

Ashville put the hammer down in the third, as 10 points from Moss spearheaded a 17-4 stretch that all but put the game out of reach.

Glencoe had twice beaten Ashville in the regular season.

“We just talked in the locker room about tonight being a life’s lesson,” said Sparks. “But I do feel that we can rebound from this and play a good game on Monday.” 

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