Crusaders show improvement in loss

Columbus Christian girls basketball coach Tom Planalp knows his team is a work in progress.

In that regard, Planalp was pleased with the progression the Crusaders made from its first game to its second, even though it resulted in a 47-18 loss to Bloomington Lighthouse on Tuesday.

“Defensively, at the beginning especially, we were a lot better,” Planalp said. “I think a lot of our improvement has been in just running the plays and getting familiarity with each other on the floor. I wasn’t even looking too hard at the score at the end. I think that ultimately, we’re getting better as a team.”

Columbus Christian (0-2), which had lost to Southside Christian 48-20 in its season opener two weeks earlier, fell behind Lighthouse 9-0 early before getting on the board with a basket and a free throw from Lauren Barker. The Crusaders were within 16-7 with three minutes left in the first half before the Lions (5-1) began pulling away.

Barker, who scored seven of her team’s nine points in the first half, finished with a team-high nine points and added eight rebounds. Madi Ochs added five points, and Grace Lorimor had three points and 14 rebounds.

Grace Holdeman led Lighthouse with 27 points and 18 rebounds. The Lions outrebounded Columbus Christian 45-41.

The Crusaders shot only 13.0 percent (7 of 54) from the field.

“We got some good looks, but we need to learn to hit the looks that we get,” Planalp said. “We were rushing a couple of shots toward the beginning. Toward the end of the season, we’re going to start hitting those. Our conditioning is going to get better, and those are going to start falling.”

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Ted Schultz is sports editor for The Republic. He can be reached at tschultz@therepublic.com or 812-379-5628.