ROCKSPRINGS, Ohio — Every time South Gallia needed a stop, South Webster came up with a score. Every time South Gallia needed a score, South Webster came up with a stop.
It was just that kind of evening for the third-seeded Lady Rebels Thursday night during a 64-59 setback to South Webster in a Division IV girls basketball sectional semifinal at Larry R. Morrison Gymnasium at Meigs High School.
Both the Lady Rebels (16-5) and sixth-seeded Lady Jeeps (9-13) battled through three ties and nine lead changes over the opening 10 minutes of regulation, but South Webster took the lead for good at 20-19 with 5:57 left in the first half. SWHS followed with a 13-9 run over the final five-plus minutes, allowing the guests to take a 33-28 edge into the intermission.
The Lady Rebels came within a possession a half-dozen times over the next two frames, but never came closer than two points (40-38) with 2:42 left in the third period. SGHS also pulled to within 62-59 with 15 seconds left in regulation after Meghan Caldwell drilled a trifecta, but Kaci Messer sank two free throws with 4.8 seconds remaining to wrap up the five-point decision.
The Lady Jeeps advance to Saturday’s D-4 sectional final at Meigs High School, where they will face second-seeded Reedsville Eastern at 2:45 p.m. The Lady Eagles (15-5) defeated 10th-seeded Federal Hocking by a 65-20 margin in the first semifinal Thursday evening.
After two lead changes and a tie through the opening minute of play, the Lady Rebels rallied back to take their first lead of the night at 9-8 with 4:10 left in the first period. Both teams found themselves tied at 11 and again at 13, then SWHS closed the final 30 seconds with a 3-2 spurt to claim a 16-15 edge after eight minutes of play.
South Gallia’s final lead of the night came at 19-18 with 6:19 left in the first half, but South Webster responded with a basket 22 seconds later for a permanent lead.
Over the next four minutes, the Lady Jeeps went on a 10-4 charge to claim their biggest lead of the first half at 30-23 with 1:56 left in the period. SGHS closed the half on a 5-3 run to pull within five points at the break.
Messer nailed a three-pointer to the start the second half, giving the guests their biggest lead of the night at 36-28 with 6:24 remaining in the third stanza. The Lady Rebels followed with a 10-4 surge to cut their deficit down to 40-38, but South Webster closed the final two-plus minutes with a 6-3 run to take a 46-41 lead into the finale.
The hosts were within three points twice in the opening minute of the fourth, but the Lady Jeeps broke away with a 6-1 spurt to again lead by eight (54-46) with 6:16 left in the contest. SGHS whittled things down to 59-56 with 38 seconds remaining and again at 62-59 with 15 ticks, but time ultimately ran out on the Lady Rebels.
Both teams committed 18 turnovers in the contest, with South Gallia committing nine apiece in each half while SWHS had nine giveaways in the third period alone. The Lady Jeeps hit six threes and were also whistled for 21 fouls, while the Lady Rebels had 20 fouls and two trifectas.
Meghan Caldwell led South Gallia with 21 points, followed by Ellie Bostic with 18 points and Chandra Canaday with 16 markers. Lesley Small and Jasmyne Johnson each added two points to rounded out the scoring. SGHS was 15-of-23 at the free throw line for 65 percent.
Courtney Blanton paced the Lady Jeeps with 21 points, followed by Kaci Messer with 19 points and Katie Hanes with 14 markers. Haley Giles had four points, while the trio of Taylor Shonkweiler, Erin Homerosky and Haley Potters rounded out the scoring with two markers apiece. The guests were 14-of-25 at the charity stripe for 56 percent.
It was the final basketball game for senior Chandra Canaday, Tori Duncan and Caitlin Watson in the Red and Gold. South Gallia finished third in the TVC Hocking this winter with a 12-4 league mark — its highest finish in school history.
South Webster 64, South Gallia 59
SW 16-17-13-18 — 64
SG 15-13-13-18 — 59
SOUTH WEBSTER (9-13): Courtney Blanton 6 7-14 21, Taylor Shonkweiler 1 0-0 2, Kaci Messer 6 4-4 19, Erin Homerosky 1 0-0 2, Haley Stanley 0 0-0 0, Corey Sherman 0 0-0 0, Katie Hanes 6 1-4 14, Haley Potters 1 0-1 2, Haley Giles 1 2-2 4. TOTALS: 22 14-25 64. Three-point goals: 6 (Messer 3, Blanton 2, Hanes). Turnovers: 18. Team Fouls: 21.
SOUTH GALLIA (16-5): Ellie Bostic 7 4-7 18, Lexi Williamson 0 0-0 0, Lesley Small 1 0-0 2, Chandra Canaday 5 6-8 16, Meghan Caldwell 8 3-5 21, Rachel Johnson 0 0-0 0, Jasmyne Johnson 0 2-3 2, Alicia Hornsby 0 0-0 0. TOTALS: 21 15-23 59. Three-point goals: 2 (Caldwell 2). Turnovers: 18. Team Fouls: 20.