BIDWELL, Ohio — The River Valley girls basketball team’s size advantage was too much for Meigs to overcome as the Lady Raiders defeated the visiting Lady Marauders 57-28 in a Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division match-up on Thursday in Gallia County.
Meigs (1-3, 0-1 TVC Ohio) struggled with moving the ball and shooting throughout the contest, while it was business as usual for River Valley (3-0, 1-0).
The Silver and Black controlled much of the first quarter of play with a 6-0 run. Meigs got on the board with a Danille Morris bucket with 3:15 left. Tianna Qualls led the Lady Raiders with another 6-0 run in the final two minutes of the period. The home team led 12-5 after one quarter.
Qualls got the River Valley offense off to a strong start in the second quarter as the Lady Raiders went on a 7-0. Courtney Jones took control on the Meigs offense and went on a 6-0 run of her own at the 2:24 mark. However, River Valley began to pull away heading into halftime as the Silver and Black led 23-15.
The Maroon and Gold struggled from the field in the first half, only making 6-of-25 field goals. Meigs also went 1-for-8 from three-point range, with six of those attempts coming in the first quarter.
Courtney Smith, Shelby Brown and Erin Jackson got the Lady Raiders off to a hot start in the second half with a 10-0 run. Kassidy Betzing gave the Lady Marauders their first points of the third quarter at the 4:02 mark. After a River Valley bucket, Sadie Fox netted a lay-up for Meigs with 1:56 left in the third period.
River Valley’s Jaden Moore connected from beyond the arc with a little over a minute left in the third quarter. The home team led 43-19 after three quarters.
Alli Hatfield got the Lady Marauders’ offense back on track in the early stages of the fourth quarter. Sarah Dowell netted a three-point shot with 5:14 remaining in the contest. Hatfield netted another score for Meigs with 2:55, but the damage was already done by the Silver and Black.
The Lady Raiders finished the game connecting on 24-of-57 field goals, while the Lady Marauders made 12-of-48 from the field. River Valley had a 37-26 advantage in rebounds — including 10 offensive rebounds. Meigs turned the ball over 13 times, while RVHS had nine turnovers.
Jackson led the Silver and Black with 11 points, followed by Qualls with 10 points. Brown finished with nine points, while Smith and Jaden Neal had eight points each. Carley Gilmore had seven points and Leia Moore contributed four points for the Lady Raiders.
“We started off a little slow,” River Valley coach Sarah Evans-Moore said. “In the first half, we didn’t shoot the ball very well and our defense and rebounding stepped in and kept us in the lead. In the second half, we were able to get a little offensive flow and get some fast break points and we were able to extend that lead.”
The Meigs offense was led by Betzing with seven points, followed by Morris, Jones and Hatfield with four points each. Dowell finished with three points, while Madison Hendricks and Sadie Fox each contributed two points for the Maroon and Gold.
“In the first half, we played very well,” Meigs coach Scott Cleland said. “We played great on both end. We couldn’t make a shot in the first quarter. We had great defense in the second quarter. In the last ten minutes of the game, we stopped playing defense.”
Both squads will meet again on Jan. 11 at Meigs High School. River Valley will play Wellston on Monday night at 6 p.m., while Meigs will host Alexander at 7:30 p.m.
Donald Lambert can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106