WASHINGTON C.H. — The Washington Lady Blue Lions made things very interesting near the end of the game Saturday night at home against McClain.
In the end, the Lady Tigers pulled out the road win, 31-28.
Washington had battled from behind and had pulled to within three points on a three-point field goal by freshman Shawna Conger with 17 seconds remaining to be played.
McClain went to the free throw line and, struggling from the line the entire night, missed two free throws with 15 seconds to play.
Washington came down court, but McClain’s defense did not allow a clear look at the basket and the Lady Tigers held on for the win.
Points were surely at a premium in this game.
There was only one player reaching double figures and that was McClain senior Malea Montavon with 10 points. She connected on two of her team’s three three-point field goals.
Senior Lexie Barton had five points and a trio of players, senior Beth Montgomery and sophomores Maddy Stegbauer and Makenzie Montavon, each scored four points.
Washington sophomore Hannah Haithcock led her team with six points.
Sophomore Bre Taylor had five points, including one three-pointer, freshman Rayana Burns and sophomore Tabby Woods both scored four points.
The game would not have been in doubt for the Lady Tigers had they connected on, say, half of their free throws.
However, McClain left the door ajar all night, making 8 of 25 foul shots for 32 percent.
Washington might not have won going away, but they might have squeaked out a victory had they had a better night at the charity stripe.
The Lady Lions hit 6 of 16 free throws for 38 percent.
McClain led Washington 12-10 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter is one likely reason McClain pulled out the win.
The Lady Tigers outscored the Lady Lions, 7-1 in that period.
Washington won the second half, 17-12, but were eight points down at the start of the third quarter.
“Obviously, McClain came out on top,” Washington head coach Samantha Leach said. “I want to commend them for that.
“I think that my girls played, defensively, very well,” Leach said. “I’ve seen a lot of improvement on the defensive end from our team.
“What hurt us tonight was our offense,” Leach said. “We didn’t knock down the shots that we needed to. When you lose by three, you look at things like foul shooting.
“The kids played hard,” Leach said. “It was a tough one, though; one that we definitely wanted. But McClain, they did a great job.”
“We started out with man (defense),” McClain head coach Jarrod Haines said. “Then we went to zone in the second quarter and that gave them a lot of trouble.
“We had Haithcock doubled a lot when she caught the ball and they couldn’t get in the flow of their offense,” Haines said. “Fortunately for us, they didn’t really hit anything from the outside until the fourth quarter.” That’s when Washington hit both of its three-point goals.
“If we shoot free throws a little better then it’s a different ball game,” Haines said. “A win is a win and we’ll take it.”
WVNU radio had McClain out-rebounding Washington, 40-29. The Monatvon sisters combined for 23 rebounds, the radio said (12 for Makenzie and 11 for Malea).
“(Washington) did a good job of getting Maddy Stegbauer tired,” Haines said. “We were much better when Lexie Barton had the ball in her hands. They did a much better job on (Barton) after the first quarter.
“Any time you can come in here and get a win…” Haines said. “Coach (Samantha) Leach is doing a great job. She’s got a young squad. Credit her. Those young kids were really getting after it. She’s going to build a good program here. She has her kids playing extremely hard. They didn’t quit; they just kept coming after us.”
For McClain, the win snaps a three-game losing streak. The Lady Tigers are now 2-3 overall, 1-2 in the SCOL.
McClain is home against East Clinton Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. The Lady Tigers will host Miami Trace Saturday, with the j-v game at 5:30 p.m.
Washington (1-3 overall, 1-2 SCOL) now embarks on a five-game road trip.
The Lady Lions will not have another home game until Jan. 7 when they host Miami Trace.
Washington’s next game is Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. at Hillsboro.
The Lady Lions will play at Clinton-Massie Saturday. That game was originally slated to be a night game, but has been moved to 1:30 p.m., with the j-v game at noon, according to Washington High School Athletic Director Jon Creamer.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
W 10 1 5 12 — 28
Mc 12 7 4 8 — 31
WASHINGTON — Rayana Burns 0-4-4; Maddy Garrison 0-0-0; Bre Taylor 1 (1)-0-5; Kassidy Hines 0-0-0; Savannah Wallace 1-2-4; Tabby Woods 2-0-4; Shawna Conger 0 (1)-0-3; Maddy Jenkins 1-0-2; Hannah Haithcock 3-0-6; Taylor Smith 0-0-0. TOTALS — 8 (2)-6-28. Free throw shooting: 6 of 16 for 38 percent. Turnovers: 15.
McCLAIN — Beth Montgomery 0-4-4; Maddy Stegbauer 2-0-4; Malea Montavon 2 (2)-0-10; Kelli Uhrig 0-0-0; Lexie Barton 0 (1)-2-5; Bryn Karnes 1-0-2; Liz Kegley 1-0-2; Makenzie Montavon 1-2-4. TOTALS — 7 (3)-8-31. Free throw shooting: 8 of 25 for 32 percent.
McClain wins j-v game against Lady Lions
The McClain Lady Tigers won over Washington Saturday in the j-v game, also by a score of 31-28.
Cierra Bolender was the leading scorer for McClain with nine points. She had the game’s only three-point basket.
Also for McClain, Hunter Scott and Beckley Smith both had six points, Hannah Smith and Meg O’Connor each scored three points while Ashley Hardesty and Madison Noel both had two points.
For Washington, Raven Haithcock led with nine points; Savanna Davis scored eight points, Maddy Garrison had six points and Tahja Pettiford added five points.
SCORE BY QUARTERS
W 2 6 13 7 — 28
Mc 12 10 1 8 — 31
Reach Chris Hoppes at 740-335-3611, ext. 1104, or on Twitter @choppes1