For the second time in less than a week, the Warren County Lady Pioneers suffered a tough loss. The Lady Pioneers fell Thursday night in a border showdown against the DeKalb County Lady Tigers in Smithville.
Mental mistakes and turnovers by the Lady Pioneers reared their ugly head as the Lady Tigers defeated the Lady Pioneers, 44-37.
Elsa Eckenrod went on the attack against the Lady Tiger defense and led Warren County with 16 points.
For the Lady Tigers, Ashli Chew led all scorers with a game-high 19 points. Chew helped the Lady Tigers to an early lead with her only 3-point shot. Chew also shot 10-of-12 from the free-throw line, most of those in the fourth.
In the final quarter, it was apparent the Lady Tiger offense was going to run as much time off the clock as possible. The guards of DeKalb County were going to force the Lady Pioneers into playing defense down the stretch.
DeKalb County fired a shot from 3-point range and it was Jailyn Bolding who connected on her third 3-point shot. The Lady Pioneers look deflated.
Eckenrod drove the ball into the Lady Tiger defense and her first shot was off. She got her own rebound and made good on her second attempt. WCHS coach Shea Panter called for timeout.
Turnovers and cheap fouls kept the ball in the hands of the Lady Tigers with 3:37 to play. Not long after, Kristen Rowland fouled out with 2:15 to play. Chew knocked down both free throws.
At 1:50 to play, the Lady Pioneers were forced to foul again and Chew again buried both.
Rylan Moore went to the floor and collected the loose ball and a foul. She stepped to the free-throw line and hit both and Warren County was within three points with 1:07 to play.
Saydee Winfree was forced to foul on the inbound play and it was her fifth. She fouled Lady Tiger Hannah Panter and she took a deep breath and connected on both.
The Lady Pioneer offense hurried the shot and it missed. The Lady Tigers rebounded and Warren County was forced to foul again. Moore fouled out and she would have to sit the final minute.
After the two missed free throws, Allison Hitchcock ran the floor and pulled up for a 3-point shot. Out of nowhere the shot was blocked by Maddison Parsley.
DeKalb County controlled the ball and the Lady Pioneers were called for an intentional foul. The Lady Tigers maintained possession after the free throws and DeKalb County ran out the clock for the win.
Eckenrod carried a heavy load in the opening quarter and she was relentless in getting herself in front of the rim. She hit on multiple occasions inside the paint. Eckenrod was fouled while in the act of shooting on her way inside the defense before the end of the quarter. She knocked down both free throws and finished the first quarter with eight of her 16 points and Warren County trailed 14-11 after the first.
The Lady Tigers missed a last-ditch effort to score before the first-half buzzer and at the break Warren County trailed 24-19.
Warren County started the third quarter off quickly and pushed the tempo. Rowland and Eckenrod combined to get the Lady Pioneers within one at 24-23.
Hitchcock then fired a quick shot over the Lady Tiger defense and hit her second 3-pointer of the game and the Lady Pioneers took the lead, 26-24.
The Lady Tigers responded when Morgan Pedigo got free and was left open for a look from behind the arch. It was Pedigo’s second 3-pointer of the game. Despite each team’s best efforts on defense, neither team gained an advantage over the other. At the end of three Warren County, trailed 31-26.
LADY TIGER SCORING – Ashli Chew 19, Jailyn Bolding 14, Morgan Pedigo 7, Hannah Panter 4
LADY PIONEER SCORING – Elsa Eckenrod 16, Allison Hitchcock 12, Kristen Rowland 4, Rylan Moore 2, Tyra Wright 2, Marlee Smith 1