By Will Willems
Things could not have started worse for the Class 3A Lebanon Lady Tigers in their quarterfinals at the Twin Lakes Invitational against Evansville Memorial.
Lebanon’s Kristen Spolyar won the opening tip by tapping it into the forecourt, only to see teammate Katie Curtis start dribbling the wrong way and get called for an over-and-back violation. Then Lebanon couldn’t stop Evansville Memorial’s Stephanie Sherwood, who scored 14 points in the first five minutes to give Memorial a 22-8 lead.
But Lebanon calmed down after that, using a 25-1 run to grab control of the game and pulled away late for a 76-58 victory.
“It is the same thing we have been talking about,” Lebanon head coach Beth DeVinney said of the beginning of the game. “When you lose their shooters — and they had two, No. 40 (Bethany Kormelink) and No. 31 (Sherwood) — and come out with a lack of focus and a lack of intensity, that is what is going to happen to you. Maybe it was a good lesson for us. We have six weeks of basketball left and then the tournament and you have to learn those lessons along the way. We can move on. We were able to come back with a nice run and picked up our defensively intensity, but against teams in the tournament you can’t make those big runs.”
The Tigers clamped down on the defensive end, holding Evansville Memorial scoreless for the final three minutes of the quarter.
Back-to-back steals and lay-ins by Curtis and Whitney Cosgray started a 12-0 run to end the quarter to cut the Memorial lead to 22-20.
For more of this story, read Friday's Lebanon Reporter.