The Troy High School girls basketball team held the lead early in their Friday showdown with Lincoln County High School, but could not hold it.
Halfway through the first quarter, the Lady Trojans led 17-10, but a series of fouls gave the Lady Lions a boost, and they narrowed the Troy lead to a single point.
“It definitely kind of took our momentum,” said Troy Head Coach Justin Young. “We’re just not deep enough to get into foul trouble.”
The Lady Lions kept the pressure on through the second quarter, taking the lead only two minutes in. Still, Troy didn’t yield easily, and ended the half only four points behind Eureka.
In the third quarter, though, the wear on the Troy players was evident, taking multiple possessions without a single point made.
Senior Kaitlyn Downey managed a three point shot about halfway into the quarter, but it did little to dent the 11-point Eureka lead.
By the next time a Lady Trojan scored, the Lady Lions already lead by more than 20 points.
Troy fought to the end, scoring twice in the final minute. Rice turned a missed three point attempt by junior Annie Day into two points, and Downey scored a final basket for the Lady Trojans with only 25 seconds left.
“I was happy,” Young said. “Since our injuries hit, this was probably out most consistent game. Those middle quarters gave us some trouble again, but I was happy with our girls’ effort and the younger girls stepping up on offense.”
Looking at the individual scoring, Young said it may be the most balance the team has had since senior Aurora Becquart was injured earlier in the season.
Young said that several of the players stood out for their performances at different points during the game, and said sophomore Katelynn Tallmadge is one who has shown 100 percent improvement since the start of the season.
The team’s energy stayed high throughout, bolstered in part by Day.
“She’s probably my favorite player to watch that I’ve ever coached. She always gives energy, and she always has fun when she’s out there doing it,” Young said.
“We just need to tighten some things up on defense, and better decisions on offense,” Young said. “Our offense was running pretty good. We just didn’t make the correct passes and decisions a lot of the time.”
Eureka 55, Troy 39
Eureka: 16 10 16 13 - 55
Troy: 17 5 3 14 - 39
Eureka: Michael Shea 1 points, 1-2 FT; Megan Hanson 1 points, 1-4 FT; Avory Escobar 5 points, 1-3 FT; Sienna Utter 21 points; Rhianna Hawkins 1 points, 1-2 FT; Maggie Graves 6 points, 2-8 FT; Karlee Frost 1 points, 1-4 FT; Erynn Thier 17 points, 4-11 FT; Liz Pacella 2 points, 0-1 FT
Troy: Annie Day 4 points, 1-2 FT; Allie Coldwell 10 points, 5-9 FT; Kaitlyn Downey 12 points; Katelyn Tallmadge 6 points; Montana Rice 5 points, 1-2 FT; Izzy Ramirez 2 points