BIDWELL, Ohio — In surpassing the 40-point plateau for the first time this season, the Lady Raiders are officially in the win column.
That’s because host River Valley, in its Tri-Valley Conference Ohio Division girls basketball opener on Thursday night, edged the visiting Wellston Golden Rockets by a count of 42-40.
River Valley, beginning its third campaign in the TVC and Ohio Division, captured its first victory of what’s been a trying season so far.
The Lady Raiders are now 1-3, while Wellston slipped to 1-2.
The outcome also marked the first head coaching win for first-year RVHS mentor Stephen Roderick, coaching in only his third game after taking over the team 10 days ago.
The Lady Raiders and Golden Rockets stood tied 7-7 following the first quarter — and 18-18 at halftime.
But the difference was the third quarter, when River Valley erupted for 20 points — including making 7-of-8 free throws.
Wellston, conversely, scored just five points — a three-pointer by Sydney Mullins and 2-of-4 foul shots by Mya Bouska.
The Golden Rockets reversed the trend in the fourth frame, outscoring the Lady Raiders 17-4, but missing nine free throws — including six in the second half — did the Blue and Gold in.
The Silver and Black’s only points in the period were a Jessica Steele field goal and free throws by Cierra Roberts and Savannah Reese.
River Valley, which held a 14-10 advantage in total field goals, overcame an 11-of-21 free-throw performance.
Wellston was 17-of-26, as both clubs canned three three-pointers apiece.
Erin Jackson, on three field goals and 3-of-4 free throws, and Steele — on four field goals and 2-of-4 foul shots — led the Lady Raiders with 10 points.
Both are seniors, along with Maggie Campbell, who scored a first-quarter basket.
Jaden Neal netted four field goals for nine, while Beth Gillman — on two field goals and 3-of-5 freebies — added eight in the second half.
Jackson, Gillman and Neal notched a three-ball apiece, while Kaylee Tucker tallied a free throw in the second stanza.
Mullins — on two twos, two threes and 9-of-12 free throws — led the Lady Rockets with a game-high 19 points.
Bouska scored seven — with the squad’s other triple along with four foul shots.
Emily Kisor and Khloe Thacker had a field goal and free throw apiece, while Kaylee Taynor tacked on four points.
Hannah Sowers in the second quarter and Jasmyn Wilson in the last each had a bucket apiece.
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106