GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — A tough start to the new season.
The Ohio Valley Christian girls basketball team shot 14 percent from the field and never led Tuesday night during a 37-17 setback to visiting Covenant in a non-conference matchup in the Old French City.
The Lady Defenders (0-1) missed their first nine shot attempts and didn’t make a field goal until the second canto, but the hosts found themselves facing a 4-2 deficit following a pair of free throws by Kristen Durst at the 3:20 mark of the opening period.
The Lady Eagles (2-0), however, netted six of their first 11 shot attempts and closed the final 3:05 of the opening frame on a 9-0 surge, allowing the Red and Blue to secure a 13-2 cushion after eight minutes of play.
Emily Childers and Lala Hurlow connected on back-to-back baskets that allowed OVCS to close back to within 15-6 with 4:41 remaining in the half, but the hosts were never closer the rest of the way.
Covenant ended the second period with a 6-0 surge that gave the guests a 21-6 advantage at the break, then reeled off eight straight points to start the third quarter en route to 29-6 edge.
The Lady Defenders — who missed their first dozen shots of the second half — finally got on the board following a Yuyan Sun bucket with 23 seconds left, but CCS nailed a trifecta just before the buzzer to give the Lady Eagles a 31-8 lead headed into the finale.
Covenant took its largest lead of the night at 33-8 just 19 seconds into the finale, but the Blue and Gold closed regulation with a 9-4 run to wrap up the 20-point outcome.
The Lady Defenders connected on 6-of-43 shot attempts overall, including a 3-of-11 effort from three-point range for 27 percent. The hosts were also 2-of-4 at the free throw line for 50 percent.
Covenant claimed a 39-21 edge in rebounds, including a 14-7 advantage on the offensive glass. CCS had one more turnover (17) in the victory than the 16 OVCS committed.
Emily Childers led the Lady Defenders with five points and five rebounds, followed by Lauren Ragan and Acacia Peck with three points apiece. Hurlow, Durst and Sun completed the tally with two points each.
Covenant netted 16-of-47 field goal attempts for 34 percent, including a 1-of-4 effort from behind the arc for 25 percent. The guests were also 4-of-10 at the charity stripe for 40 percent.
Emily Hutchison paced CCS with 11 points and seven rebounds, followed by Eden Bumgardner with 10 markers and Karleigh Collins with six points.
Amanda Bailey and Grace Hagley each contributed four points, while Kassie Venoy completed the winning tally with two points.
Bryan Walters can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2101.