Monday, December 12th, 2011

Redskins rally falls three points short

By Gary R. Rasberry

St. Henry's Sarah Moeder passes ahead to a teammate during Saturday's matchup ag. . .

ST. HENRY - After a sluggish start to Saturday's game, St. Henry's girls basketball team did nearly everything they needed to do to rally and beat Lima Central Catholic.
However, LCC's Stacia Allen canned a pair of free throws with 16.8 seconds left in the game to put the visitors on top 51-50 and teammate Ty Taylor's free throws with three seconds on the clock helped the T-Birds escape Redskin Gymnasium with a 53-50 win.
It was a tough start to the game for St. Henry as the Redskins committed 10 first-quarter turnovers while LCC's Taylor and Allen each hit three-pointers to give the T-Birds an early 13-4 advantage.
Despite the early deficit, the Redskins were aggressive on the boards in rallying back and St. Henry went into halftime trailing by just one point at 22-21.
"We had a lousy start," said Redskins' coach Jeff Roessner. "You can't turn the ball over 10 times in a quarter and expect to beat somebody. Our kids battled hard on the boards to get back into it."
The Redskins were finally able to tie LCC at 27-27 after a Sarah Moeder three-pointer at the 5:54 mark of the third quarter. Taylor then nailed a three-pointer to put LCC up 30-27 but the T-Birds struggled to polish off the Redskins.
"We've really struggled on the boards," said LCC's coach Bill Taflinger, referring to the Redskins' 41-34 rebounding edge. "That's why we try to pressure some. With the lack of rebounding, we have to make it up by winning the turnover battle every game."
St. Henry rallied again as Moeder got the hoop-and-harm three-pointer to cut the deficit to 42-41 with 5 1/2 minutes left in the game.
Stacy Lange got a rebound and stickback at the 4:21 mark that gave the Redskins their first lead at 43-42. Lange added two free throws to make it 45-42.
The Redskins missed a chance to increase the lead on their next possession and Taylor canned her fourth trey of the game for LCC with 3:10 on the clock to tie the score at 45-all. Lexi Kingsbery, in foul trouble for most of the day, put the T-Birds up 47-45 with 2:34 to go and then added another bucket to push the lead to 49-45 with under two minutes left to play.
Ally Mikesell got the Redskins to within two points with 1:43 to play in the game and Kelly Siefring cut it to one on a free throw at the 1:12 mark.
Lange drove baseline for St. Henry and hit a short jumper with 37 seconds on the clock to put the Redskins on top 50-49.
LCC worked the ball to Allen at the top of the key and the junior drove the lane and drew a foul with 16.8 seconds on the clock and calmly made both free throws to put the T-Birds up 51-50.
After their last timeout with 11.3 ticks to go, St. Henry worked the ball to Ashley Heitkamp, who misfired on an open short jumper. Taylor got the rebound for LCC and was fouled with three seconds left. Taylor, who missed her first four free throws of the game, drained both to give the T-Birds a three-point lead.
The Redskins advanced the ball into makable three-point territory, but a T-Birds' defensive deflection of a pass ended St. Henry's chances as the horn sounded.
"This kind of game, I expected and was hoping for, honestly," said Taflinger. "We haven't been in a real tight game. I was glad with the way we responded at the end."
"It's a shame we had to lose it. This would have been a great game to win," said Roessner. "It was one of those games if you'd win it, it builds character. You lose it, it's devastating. We felt like we played hard enough and did some good things."
Taylor had 18 points for LCC and Allen tallied 10.
Lange finished with 13 points and eight boards for the Redskins. Heitkamp added 12 with Moeder scoring all 11 of her points in the second half.
St. Henry stays home Thursday night as Versailles comes to town for a Midwest Athletic Conference matchup.
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