By Rob Kiser
TROY — A young Piqua girls basketball team had been progressing in the last several games.
That was not the case Saturday against a solid Troy Christian team.
The Lady Eagles recorded a 40-22 victory in the Eagles Nest that left Piqua coach Brian Gillespie mystified.
“This was not a very good effort,” Gillespie said. “We had taken some steps forward recently — this was not one of those days.”
The quickness and defense of Meredith Haddad, combined with the hot shotting of Lauryn Lavey and the Eagles play inside, led by Hailey Peters, was too much for the Lady Indians.
After getting down early, the Indians had closed within 12-10 early in the second quarter after two Chloe Clark free throws.
A putback by Lavy and basket by Peters made it 16-10, before Piqua’s Mikayla Schaffner scored to make it 16-12 with 3:00 to go in the first half.
But, Troy Christian put together 17-2 run over the next 11 minutes — scoring the final five points of the first half and owning a 12-2 advantage in the third quarter — to take a 33-14 lead to the fourth quarter to end all doubt.
“I really can’t explain it,” Gillespie said. “It was like we were sleepwalking today. We needed somebody to step up and make plays and we just didn’t have it.”
Turnovers were an issue again.
“That hasn’t happened in a long time,” Gillespie said. “We didn’t know what to do against their 1-2-2 zone. we didn’t know how to attack it and that is something we had worked on.”
For Piqua, 3-13, Kelsey Bachman hit two threes in the fourth quarter and led the Lady Indians with six points.
Lavy had 16 points to lead Troy Christian, 9-3. Peters added 11 points and seven rebounds and Kathryn Lee grabbed eight rebounds.
Troy Christian had eight second-change points in the first half and that trend continued throughout the game.
“We didn’t do a good job of screening out,” Gillespie said.
Piqua was nine of 36 from the floor for 25 percent and four of nine from the line for 44 percent.
Troy Christian was 18 of 52 from the floor for 35 percent and four of six from the line for 67 percent.
The Lady Eagles won the battle of the boards 30-26 and had 14 turnovers to Piqua’s 26.
The Lady Indians will be back in action Wednesday, hosting Troy.
“We have a big game Wednesday,” Gillespie said. “I know the girls will come back and play a good game.”
And hopefully, take another step forward.
Lauren Williams 1-1-3, Kelsey Magoteaux 1-0-2, Claire Went 0-1-1, Mikayla Schaffner 2-0-4, Lily Stewart 2-0-4, Chloe Clark 0-2-2, Carly Brown 0-0-0, Kelsey Bachman 2-0-6, Skyler Sloan 0-0-0, Ainsleigh Spradlin 0-0-0. Totals: 8-4-22.
Troy Christian (40)
Kenley Blake 3-0-6, Meghan Haddad 0-2-2, Hailey Peters 5-1-11, Lauryn Lavy 8-0-16, Meredith Haddad 2-0-4, Kathryn Lee 0-1-1, Jalyn Forrer 0-0-0, Abby Toms 0-0-0, Hanna Kincer 0-0-0, Rachel Winters 0-0-0, Sophie Pitsenbarger 0-0-0. Totals: 18-4-40.
3-point field goals — Piqua: Bachman (2).
Score By Quarters
Piqua 8 12 14 22
Troy Christian 12 21 33 40
Records: Piqua 3-13 , Troy Christian 9-3.