CENTENARY, Ohio — Headed into the postseason with momentum.
The Gallia Academy girls basketball team finished the the regular season in style on Thursday inside its home gymnasium, with the Blue Angels defeating Ohio Valley Conference guest Rock Hill by a 57-36 count for their second straight victory.
The only two lead changes of the game were within the opening minute, and Gallia Academy (8-14, 2-12 OVC) took the advantage for good at 3-2, as part of a 10-0 run The Blue and White were up 17-8 by the end of the first quarter.
Rock Hill (6-16, 2-12) started the second quarter with a 5-to-3 spurt, cutting the margin to seven points, but GAHS closed the half with a 13-to-4 run for a 33-17 lead.
The hosts added four to their advantage in the third period, outscoring RHHS 12-to-8 for a 45-27 lead going into the fourth.
The Blue Angel lead grew to as many as 25 points, at 55-30 with 3:30 to go, and Gallia Academy settled for the 57-36 win.
GAHS made 25-of-58 (43.1 percent) field goal attempts, including 1-of-7 (14.3 percent) three-point tries, while the guests were 15-of-39 (38.5 percent) from the field, including 1-of-10 (10 percent) from deep. At the foul line, the Blue and White were 6-for-8 (75 percent) and the Red and White were 5-for-7 (71.4 percent).
Gallia Academy doubled-up the guests on the glass, winning the rebounding battle 34-to-17, including 16-to-5 on the offensive end. GAHS had 14 turnovers, eight fewer than the Redwomen. The Blue Angels combined for 12 steals, 11 assists, and one rejection, while Rock Hill had 13 assists, four blocked shots and three steals.
Maddy Petro led the victors with a double-double of 22 points and 13 rebounds, to go with three assists. Alex Barnes was next with 20 points, nine rebounds and three assists in her senior night game. Koren Truance tallied 11 points and three assists for the victors, while Preslee Reed and Regan Wilcoxon scored two points apiece.
Leading the GAHS defense, Petro had four steals and one block, while Barnes picked up five steals.
Lucy Simpson paced Rock Hill with 15 points and seven rebounds. Savannah Cade and Aleigh Matney were next with six points apiece, followed by Kelie Adams with five points, and Mackenzie Hanshaw with two. Makayla Scott earned a game-high seven assists, while Cade blocked a pair of shots.
GAHS — which started the week with a 54-35 win over Point Pleasant — earns a season split with the Redwomen, as RHHS claimed the first meeting by a 52-51 edge on Jan. 6.
Gallia Academy opens the postseason against Jackson at Logan High School on Monday at 8 p.m.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.