The visiting Blue Angels (5-12, 3-7 SEOAL) fell behind 6-0 in the opening 2:30 of the game as the Ironladies (13-3, 6-3) established a 14-6 advantage after eight minutes of play.
GAHS never came closer than six points over the rest of the first half, as Jackson went on a 16-12 run in the second canto to take a 30-18 advantage into the intermission. That halftime lead was also the hosts’ biggest of the night.
The Angels, however, made their big move after the break, going on a 20-13 surge in the third quarter to cut the deficit down to 43-38 entering the finale. But the third period also had some interesting happenings en route to that score.
JHS maintained its dozen-point edge out to 34-22 early on, but the guests countered with a 14-4 charge to pull within two points (38-36) with less than two minutes left in the canto.
The Ironladies extended their edge back out to 41-38, then came up with a steal with 23 seconds left. During that takeaway, GAHS assistant coach Jeff Lanham was assessed a technical foul for being up off the bench and arguing with officials about the steal at the same time as head coach Renee Barnes.
Madison Ridout converted both free throws, and Jackson retained possession before running out the clock on a final shot attempt in the quarter. JHS took a five-point edge into the finale.
The technical foul, though costly, served as a springboard for the guests to start the fourth — as the Angels scored the first six points for its first lead of the night at 44-43 with 6:20 left in regulation.
Both teams traded leads over the next minute — giving GAHS a 46-45 edge — but a Kerrigan Hoover putback at 4:15 gave the Ironladies a 47-46 edge. Jackson would never trail the rest of the way.
Gallia Academy battled back to knot things up at 49 after a pair of free throws from Heather Ward with 2:44 remaining, but the guests had three straight turnovers on their ensuing possessions — allowing Jackson to take a 53-49 lead with 26.6 seconds left.
Samantha Barnes broke loose on a runout play and scored a layup for a 53-51 contest with 13 seconds left, but Ridout netted 1-of-2 free throws with seven ticks left to wrap up the one-possession outcome.
Jackson claimed a season sweep of this series with the triumph after posting a 55-39 victory in Centenary back on January 17. It is also the first time that GAHS has been swept by the Ironladies in a regular season since the 2007-08 campaign under Jeff Duduit.
The Blue Angels connected on 18-of-42 field goal attempts for 43 percent, including a 1-of-8 effort from three-point range for 13 percent. Jackson, conversely, made 20-of-50 floor shots for 40 percent, including a 1-for-12 effort from behind the arc for eight percent.
Jackson outrebounded the guests by a 29-24 margin and committed 15 turnovers in the triumph, 10 of which came in the second half. GAHS committed 19 miscues in the setback.
Barnes and Mattie Lanham both led the Angels with 13 points apiece, followed by Morgan Daniels with 11 markers and Ward with eight points. Haley Rosier rounded out the scoring with six points. GAHS was 14-of-19 at the free throw line for 74 percent.
Kari Jenkins led Jackson with 12 points, followed by Ridout with 11 and Nicole Chapman with 10 markers. JHS was 13-of-20 at the charity stripe for 65 percent.
Gallia Academy returns to action Saturday when it travels to Portsmouth for an SEOAL matchup at 6 p.m.