WEST ALEXANDRIA — Riane Woodard scored a go-ahead basket with 90 seconds left to propel Preble Shawnee over Twin Valley South on Saturday, Jan. 16, during a 34-33 Preble Shawnee win.
Behind 17 points off the bench from Kelsie Shafer, Twin Valley South led the majority of the game but was unable to hang on as Woodard and Brenna Woodard made several key plays down the stretch to secure the 34-33 Preble Shawnee victory.
“I tried to tell them not to take somebody lightly,” Preble Shawnee head coach Joe Webster said. “We’re coming off a big league win over Carlisle where we scored 60-some points and can’t put 15 on a board in a half. It is what it is, but we’re going to take the ‘W’ right now.”
The Woodards combined for the Arrows’ final six points, with Brenna creating a key steal in the final 30 seconds before Riane’s offensive rebound on a missed free throw set up the Arrows for the one point victory.
Both teams struggled to score the ball throughout the game and the Panthers took advantage of Preble Shawnee missed opportunities.
The Panthers saw Mylan Crews and Jaycie Fisher both make threes in the opening period and Emily Hutchings made a free throw to give Twin Valley South a 7-5 lead after the first. Elise Walker scored two field goals in the quarter for the Arrows and Riane Woodard made a free throw.
In the second quarter, the Panthers sophomore post player Shafer entered the game for the first time and started the scoring in the quarter with a layup. The Arrows answered after Walker scored, then Brenna Woodard created a steal and scored a layup to tie the game at nine.
Shafer scored again and Shelbie Brown answered with an offensive rebound put-back.
Shafer then scored two more baskets for the Panthers — she scored all eight TVS points in the second quarter. Malorie Plaugher ended the half with a layup to cut the Panther lead in half heading into the break. At half, Twin Valley South led 15-13.
In the second half Preble Shawnee extended its pressure defense but Twin Valley South was ready, as the Panthers extended the lead to 21-15. The Arrows failed to score a field in the quarter but a pair of free throws from Woodard and free throws made by Chloe Smith, Nicole Sims and Brown allowed the visitors to cut the lead to three.
With the Arrows struggling to score, two more Shafer baskets put the Panthers up 25-20.
On the next possession seniors Morgan Newhart and Haily Keener both picked up their fourth fouls of the game, forcing the Panther veterans to the bench with over half the final frame to play.
Twin Valley South head coach Jeff Case spoke about losing two leaders to foul trouble late: “They are seniors and they are experienced,” he said, adding, “They are made for situations like that but it really comes down to what everyone else did to pick them up, and our bench play and our contributions we got from other players picked them up tonight.”
With 5:14 to play, Twin Valley South led 27-24.
After two missed free throws, Sims found Brenna Woodard for a basket and Sims quickly scored her first points to give the Arrows their first lead since early in the first half.
Shafer answered for the Panthers with two free throws and took a charge on a driving Riane Woodard on the following possession to give South a 29-28 lead and the ball with three minutes left.
Two South turnovers led to a Riane Woodard basket. Abby Creech answered for the Panthers with just under two minutes to play.
Creech’s basket only set the stage for Riane and Brenna Woodard, who went on to score four points in the closing 90 seconds, including a driving basket by Riane Woodard to give the Arrows the lead for good.
Twin Valley South had one last attempt, but Keener’s three point attempt fell of the rim.
The final score was Preble Shawnee 34, Twin Valley South 31.
Case was happy with his team’s effort, noting his team held its seventh opponent under 40 points on the season. “We had a game plan and the girls did a really good job sticking to it and being patient. They are really buying into to what we are doing as the season goes on. We were in a position to win tonight and that’s part of the progression.”
Shafer scored 17 to lead all scorers. Brenna Woodard scored five, Sims four, Smith three, Brown three, Walker six and Riane Woodard led the Arrows with 10 points.
Preble Shawnee defeated Carlisle on Thursday, Jan. 14, 63-54. Smith scored 19, Sims scored 16 and Brenna Woodard scored 11.
Twin Valley South lost 78-34 to Newton on Thursday, Jan. 14.
The Arrows are now 5-8 and host Tri-County North on Tuesday, Jan. 19, travel to Dixie on Thursday, Jan. 21, and host Waynesville on Saturday, Jan. 23.
The Panthers are now 3-14 on the season and have lost nine straight. They host Tri-Village on Thursday, Jan. 21, and travel to Ansonia on Saturday, Jan. 31.
Reach Austin Schmidt at 937-683-4062
or on Twitter at aschmidt_RH