STEWART, Ohio — The Lady Tornadoes simply dug to deep of a hole to climb out of.
The Southern girls basketball team fell behind Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division host Federal Hocking by 15 points after one quarter on Saturday evening in Athens County, and the Purple and Gold ultimately fell by a 48-32 final tally.
Southern (1-5, 1-4 TVC Hocking) — fresh off of its first win of the year — was held to just three points on a trio of free throws in the opening stanza. Meanwhile, the Lady Lancers (4-2, 4-1) — who stretched their winning streak to four games with the win — had their best offensive period of the contest in the first, marking 18 points on the strength of seven field goals.
The Lady Tornadoes bounced back in the second quarter, scoring 13 points on seven free throws and a trio of two-pointers. FHHS cooled off a bit in the second, scoring nine points and settling for a 27-16 halftime advantage.
The Lady Lancers extended their lead to 15 points, at 39-24, by the end of the third, outscoring SHS by a 12-8 clip in the period. The Maroon and Gold finished the game with a 9-to-8 run, capping off the 48-32 victory.
Southern — which had two starters foul out of the contest — shot 16-of-23 (69.6 percent) from the free throw line, where FHHS was 9-of-20 (45 percent).
The Lady Tornado offense was led by senior Jaiden Roberts, who scored 10 points on a 10-of-13 performance from the charity stripe. SHS sophomore Baylee Wolfe hit a quartet of field goals en route to eight points, while Phoenix Cleland and Lauren Lavender came up with six points apiece. Shelbi Dailey rounded out the scoring column for the guests with two markers.
Federal Hocking was led by senior Audrey Blake with 13 points, including nine from beyond the arc. Hannah Dunfee was next for the victors with nine points, followed by Emma Beha with eight. Kylie Tabler and Paige Tolson scored five points apiece, with Tabler connecting on one three-pointer. Tamika Mayle and Brittanie Jackson marked three points apiece for FHHS, while Ashlyn Jarvis earned two points.
The Lady Tornadoes will have a chance to avenge this setback on Jan. 25 when the Lady Lancers invade Racine.
The Purple and Gold return to their home court on Thursday and will welcome South Gallia.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.