Lady Hawks drop one-point loss to 20-2 DIII Mechanicsburg

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Taylee Woodbury scores for the Lady Hawks in non-conference matchup with Mechanicsburg. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

UNION CITY – The Mississinawa Lady Blackhawks dropped a one-point game to the visiting Mechanicsburg Lady Indians 66-65 in a hotly contested game.

“Both teams were playing really hard and both teams wanted to win,” said Mississinawa Valley coach, Michael Paige. “We have to keep fighting and keep going after it.”

Syenna Purdin hits a Mississinawa Valley 3-pointer in home game with Mechanicsburg. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

The D-III Lady Indians brought a 19-2 season mark into the game and stand alone atop the Ohio Heritage Conference with a 15-1 record.

“We wanted to play somebody better than most of the teams we’ll see in the tournament,” Paige said. “It is great going into the tournament having a game like this and to be able to build off of that.”

Brenna Price scores for the Lady Hawks in Monday night game with Mechanicsburg. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

The Lady Indians bolted out to a 20 point 29-9 lead with 0:39 showing on the first quarter clock before the Lady Hawks closed out the final seconds with a 5-0 run to trail 29-14 after one complete.

Mississinawa battled back winning the second, third, and fourth quarters in coming up one point short. The game was decided at the free-throw line as Lady Hawks struggled going 7-14 at the charity stripe while Mechanicsburg was knocking down 14-22 tosses.

“Our girls always keep fighting, that’s why I wasn’t real concerned being down,” said Coach Paige. “I knew we would come back, I figured we had enough to finish it out.”

Ingrid Ojeda drives to the MV basket for a Lady Hawks score. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

In the opening period, the Lady Indians couldn’t miss canning three 3-pointers, eight 2-point baskets and 3-3 at the line to put the Lady Hawks in a 15-point hole.

“We started out of sink and we had a ton of turnovers to start the game,” Paige noted. “We average 10-11 turnovers a game and we doubled that tonight but we’ll fix those mistakes. We slowed down and took care of the ball as the game went on.”

Mississinawa Valley battled back taking the second quarter 14-7 led by six Taylee Woodbury points sending the teams to the break with the Lady Hawks trailing 36-28.

MacKenzea Townsend battles for a rebound in Lady Hawks game with Mechanicsburg Lady Indians. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

Period No. three went to the Lady Hawks 20-18 with Mechanicsburg holding a 6-point 54-48 advantage after three quarters of play. Syenna Purdin paced MV with two 3-pointers for 6 points, Ingrid Ojeda knocked down a trey and a 2-point basket for 5 points, Makenna Hoggatt chipped in 5 points and Cora Hoggatt and Paige Emrick both contributed a 2-point basket.

The fourth quarter had Mississinawa Valley with a chance to win in the final seconds of the game but could not get the ball to fall giving the D-III Lady Indians a one-point non-conference win over the D-IV Lady Hawks.

Paige Emrick puts up a Lady Hawks jumper in non-conference game with Mechanicsburg. (Gaylen Blosser photo)

“We had four attempts at the end to take the lead and win the game and we didn’t,” Paige stated. “Obviously girls were emotional from everything that was going on. Our focus was off a little bit but we’ll take it, build on it, and keep going.”

“It was a little bit of an off-night for some of our girls but Syenna Purdin had a good night, Brenna Price played well,” Coach Paige added. “Teams are going to focus on Taylee Woodbury – she’s so good. We have to learn to adapt to that and still be able to run our offense with them doing that.”

Woodbury paced MV with 10 fourth quarter points including two 3-points, a basket, and 2-2 at the line.

With the win Mechanicsburg improves to 20-2 to close out regular season play while Mississinawa Valley closes out the regular season with a 17-5 record and a 10-1 WOAC mark.

BOXSCORE:

MECHANICSBURG – A. Delong 24, E. Forrest 11, D. Skillings 8, E. Conley 6, C. Forrest 6, T Heizer 5 – TOTALS 17 14-22 4 66

MISSISSINAWA VALLEY – T. Woodbury 16, S. Purdin 14, B. Price 10, I. Ojeda 9, K. Townsend 8, P. Emrick 7, C. Hoggatt 2 – TOTALS 16 7-14 9 65

3-POINTERS

Mechanicsburg 4 (A. Delong 1, D. Skillings 1, E. Conley 1, T. Heizer 1)

Mississinawa Valley 9 (S. Purdin 4, T. Woodbury 3, I. Ojeda 1, P. Emerick 1)

SCORE by QUARTERS)

29-07-18-10 66 Mechanicsburg

14-14-20-18 65 Mississinawa Valley