WEST ALEXANDRIA — Lindsey Cole was looking for her Twin Valley South girls’ basketball team to get that confidence building first win when it hosted rival Tri-County North last week.
Both teams entered the game struggling and seeking win No. 1 on the season.
It was the home-standing Panthers, behind the three-point shooting of Maycie Davidson, who claimed a 33-16 victory on Thursday, Dec. 19.
Davidson knocked down four 3-pointers to lead South with 12 points as TVS pulled away in the second half.
“It was definitely a defensive battle, both teams playing zone and causing each other to have to shoot a lot of outside shots,” Cole said. “Getting Maycie going from three, that really opened things up for the rest of us. Even Kenzie Neal, getting her out on the three-point line, showing that we can shoot (was a key). Hitting those three’s really helped us out. In a low scoring game, three points counts.”
It took a while for either team to get on the board.
South broke the ice with a basket by Taylor Clark with 3:53 to play in the first quarter to go up 2-0. A pair of three’s by Davidson helped South to a 10-0 lead after the first quarter.
Both teams struggled to score in the second quarter. Lexi Delong tallied North’s only points of the half with a basket at the 6:35 mark. A Neal free throw was the extent of the scoring for South, who led 11-2 at the half.
South extended its lead to 21-9 after three.
A basket by Delong pulled North to within 10 (21-11) with just under seven minutes left in the game, but South went on a 9-3 run over the next 4-plus minutes to put the game out of reach.
In addition to leading South in scoring, Davidson added four steals. Clark had a game-high 12 rebounds and Neal grabbed 11 and finished with eight points.
“It feels good to finally have the win. It really helps with our confidence. Our confidence has been very low this year,” Cole said. “Just having the win now, headed in a positive direction, it doesn’t feel very good to have a big goose egg at the front of your record. I think that will help our confidence going forward especially going into Christmas break and starting out the second half of the season.”
For North, the goal was to slow the pace and keep the score down.
“The goal was too slow it down, take good shots. But one of seventeen shooting (in the first half) is not going to get it. Until we can depend on each other to shoot and score and make those little bunny shots, bunny shots are killing us,” North coach Jessica Spitler said. “Obviously, we did that for a while and when we slowed it down we stayed in the game.”
Delong led North with seven points and six rebounds.
Despite the early season struggles, Spitler said it’s important for her team to stay together.
“Moving forward, we’ve got four or five (games) that are a chance. But, today, I told these girls they have to work as a team – and today we struggled with that. We didn’t have that team bonding that we normally do,” she said. “If there is one thing we have to do this year it’s to stay together as a team.”
South will next play on Thursday, Jan. 2 when it travels to Arcanum.
North is scheduled to host Arcanum on Saturday, Dec. 28 and will travel to Bradford on Jan. 2 and Belmont on Saturday, Jan. 4.
Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or follow on Twitter @emowen_RH