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INDIANAPOLIS — Coming off of an exciting comeback win against Rushville in its season opener, Columbus East ran into a bit of trouble at Class 2A No. 3 Heritage Christian on Tuesday night, falling 81-43.
East kept up with Heritage much of the first quarter before committing three-consecutive turnovers, leading into an 11-0 run by the Eagles (3-0) that put them up 26-10.
Although the Olympians (1-1) picked it up in the second half, they couldn’t overcome the 15 turnovers committed in the first half alone, resulting in a 43-21 deficit going into halftime.
The quick Heritage Christian squad ran a full-court press much of the first half, trapping East at half-court and forcing turnovers.
“We have to take care of the basketball, obviously,” East coach Danny Brown said. “They were pressing us after the score, and we just need to read that a little bit better and pick it up. We can’t have that many turnovers and have a chance to win the game.”
Mikala Lomax led the Olympians with 13 points, followed by Sarah Loesch with eight, Audrey Wetzel with six and Lyric Jackson with five.
“This (Heritage Christian) is a very good team, a team that is capable of winning a 2A state title,” Brown said. “I tell the girls we need to have short memories. We can take something from this and learn from it.”
Brown emphasized the importance of looking ahead to the next opponent, East Central, on Thursday night at East.
“East Central continues to get better every year,” Brown said. “It will be a challenge, but hopefully the Orange Pit is kind to us again.”
Third quarter dooms Cougars
SHELBYVILLE — A rough third quarter helped put the game out of reach, as the Southwestern girls basketball team defeated South Decatur 56-36 in a Mid-Hoosier Conference contest.
The Cougars trailed only 22-13 at halftime, but eight points each by Southwestern’s Annie Thomas and Oda Shackleford in the third quarter helped the Spartans push out to a 22-point lead.
Things started slow in the fourth quarter, but the Cougars didn’t give up. They put on an impressive push late in the game, scoring 16 points. Junior Ashley Johanningman led South Decatur, scoring nine points in the fourth quarter.
“We take it one game at a time and use each to learn for the next game,” South Decatur coach Amy Macy said. “We were better tonight at not getting into foul trouble, and our defense was overall really good.”
Johanningman had 12 points for the Cougars (0-3, 0-1) and played aggressive defense in the lane.
“We have to forget about this game and focus on Greensburg and the county game,” Johanningman said. “We’ve been working as a team on passing the ball and not being selfish.”
“We’ve talked about adding a piece each game in preparation for sectional,” Macy said. “We need to continue to build.”
South Decatur senior Samantha Miller added nine points, despite playing with an injured foot sustained in Saturday’s overtime loss to Rising Sun.
“I rolled my foot, and it’s been bothering me,” Miller said. “You have to ignore the pain and keep playing hard. We played better defense tonight and played better as a team. We need to keep working hard in practice on moving the ball more.”
Despite playing improved defense, the Cougars didn’t have an answer for junior guard Annie Thomas, who scored 21 points for the Spartans (2-0, 2-0).
“Annie’s a great player and tough to defend,” Macy said. “She’s going to get her points. We’ll continue to add a little more each practice and each game. Hopefully we’ll get there by sectional.”
Seymour holds off Batesville
BATESVILLE — Seymour led 17-7 after one quarter and 36-18 at halftime before the Owls held off the Bulldogs for a 57-46 win.
Abby Thompson sparked Seymour with 13 points, including three 3-pointers. Maci Lubker came off the bench and added 11 points, and Taylor Gossett had a solid game of eight points and 13 rebounds.
Batesville’s Bailey Baumer led all scorers with 16 points.
The Owls improved to 2-1 and Tuesday will open Hoosier Hills Conference play at Floyd Central.
Trinity Lutheran tops Clarksville
CLARKSVILLE — Trinity outscored Clarksville 25-13 in the middle quarters to pull away from Clarksville, and the Cougars won their season-opener 49-31.
Mariah Nolan was the only Cougar in double figures, leading all scorers with 14 points. Hannah Barker chipped in eight points and a team-high nine rebounds.
Courtney Holmes led Clarksville (1-4) with 10 points.
On Friday, the Cougars (1-0) will play host to Eastern Greene.
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