MERCERVILLE, Ohio — Something had to give.
In a battle of winless programs, the South Gallia girls basketball team picked up its first victory of the season on Saturday following a 55-48 decision over visiting River Valley in a non-conference matchup of Gallia County squads.
The host Lady Rebels (1-5) — despite making only two field goals in the opening frame — stormed out to a 12-5 advantage through eight minutes of play, but the Lady Raiders (0-6) answered as Beth Gillman scored 14 points as part of an 18-14 second quarter run that gave SGHS a slim 26-23 edge headed into the break.
Kiley Stapleton scored seven points during a pivotal 16-7 third quarter run that allowed the Red and Gold to break away for a 42-30 lead entering the finale.
Jaden Neal scored six points for the Silver and Black down the stretch as the guests closed regulation on an 18-13 run, but the Lady Rebels — behind five points from Aaliyah Howell and four points from Olivia Hornsby — ultimately held on for the seven-point triumph.
The game was ultimately decided at the free throw line as the hosts made 25-of-43 attempts for 58 percent, while River Valley netted 12-of-17 charity tosses for 71 percent.
SGHS made 13 total field goals — including four trifectas — in the contest, with Stapleton leading the charge with 15 points. Hornsby was next with 12 points, while Erin Evans and Aaliyah Howell respectively chipped in 10 and eight markers.
Amaya Howell added five points and Faith Poling contributed three points, while Christine Griffith completed the winning tally with two markers.
The Lady Raiders netted 16 total field goals — including four three-pointers — and received a game-high 20 points from Beth Gillman. Neal and Kelsey Brown were next with respective efforts of nine and six points, while Kaylee Gillman added five markers.
Hannah Jacks, Savannah Reese, Jordan Garrison and Kaylee Tucker completed the scoring with two points apiece.
Both teams returned to action Monday as the Lady Rebels hosted Belpre and the Lady Raiders traveled to Athens for a pair of league contests.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.