COVINGTON — Crawfordsville girls basketball rolled into Covington Tuesday in search of a three-game winning streak as the season is coming to an end. If the Athenians were to come out victorious, it would have to be without both senior guards in Shea Williamson and Olivia Reed as both didn’t make the trip.
Crawfordsville came out and played a good first half considering the circumstances as CHS led 20-16 at the break. In the third quarter, the tired legs of short-handed Athenians began to show and the Trojans outscored Crawfordsville 20-5 to take a 36-25 lead. Crawfordsville would attempt to rally back but they just ran out of steam and would fall 48-39 to the Trojans.
“I’m proud of effort and we came out with a ton of passion tonight,” Crawfordsville coach Tyler Smith said. “We just ran out of gas near the end. They really started to go down low on us and we missed some shots that we had good looks with. In the end it’s that one bad quarter that got us. The girls who played tonight got some valuable experience and everyone stepped up and played their role really well.”
Some of those players that Smith mentioned getting meaningful minutes included normal bench player Elyse Widmer. Smith brought both Addie Hodges and Abby Cox up from the JV to fill some depth with Hodges getting her first career start.
Liddy McCarty would lead the Athenians in scoring with 11 points in the loss while Kearston Hutchens scored 10. Taylor Abston scored nine points and hauled in 14 rebounds down low. Both Hutchens and Hodges also hauled in seven boards each. Widmer would chip in six points and Hodges would get in the scoring column on the final shot of the game with a made three.
“It’s hard sometimes to create things on the offensive end when you don’t have those girls who normally are your creators,” Smith said. “Then Elyse gets popped in the eye so at one point we had four of our normal seven girls out. That’s just really hard to overcome.”
Kali Pettit played a big role for the Trojans in the win with 12 points including six striaght to start the third. Lilly Hacquet scored 11 and Shiann Haymaker scored eight for the Trojans.
After McCarty put the Athenians up one at the free-throw line, the Trojans then went on a 14-0 run as part of that 20-5 third quarter. Trojan coach Travis Brown talked about the adjustments that his team had to make in order to take control of the game.
“They came out in a box and one on Haymaker and that’s something we hadn’t seen before yet this year,” he said. “In that first half we just didn’t rebound the ball that well. They were taking some of the shots we wanted them to take, but we didn’t secure the board. That was our primary focus at halftime to just crash the boards.”
The rebounding margin narrowly favored the Trojans in the game as they out-rebounded CHS 36-33.
Crawfordsville falls to 6-13 on the season with the loss while the Trojans improve to 7-10.
Next up on the docket for the Athenians will be a Saturday showdown with county rival Southmont. County girls basketball fans remember the last time these two teams matched up was in the opening round of the Girls Sugar Creek Classic with Crawfordsville coming away with a dominant 45-29 win.
“With us playing better recently and us beating them earlier this year, just throw all of that out the window,” Smith said. “It’ll come down to who wants it more and I expect a close game and a battle. We just hope to get healthy and get one or two good practices in this week so we can be ready for war.”
The Mounties and Athenians will tip off at 5:30 on Saturday at Southmont in which the Mounties will be celebrating their 50th anniversary of the school. The Athenian and Mountie boys will play in the night-cap after the conclusion of the girls game.
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