CENTENARY, Ohio — Fourth quarter defense and key free throw keep the Blue Angels perfect.
With the teams tied at 42 three quarters into Saturday’s non-conference girls basketball game in Gallia County, the host Blue Angels outscored visiting Wellston by a 15-to-10 count over the final eight minutes and claimed the 57-52 victory.
The Lady Rockets (1-1) led 12-11 after one quarter of play and extended their lead to 27-24 by halftime. Gallia Academy (3-0) had its best offensive stanza of the game in the third, outscoring WHS 18-to-15 in the period to tie the game at 42.
The Blue Angel defense followed with its best period of the evening, holding Wellston to 10 points in the finale. GAHS sank just three field goals in the fourth, but more than made up for it from the line, connecting on 9-of-13 free throws to seal the 57-52 win.
Gallia Academy shot 19-of-56 (33.9 percent) from the field, including 3-of-10 (30 percent) from three-point range. For the game, the Blue Angels were 16-of-22 (72.7 percent) from the charity stripe.
Collectively, the Blue and White had 40 rebounds, including 11 on the offensive end. The Blue Angels also combined for 10 assists, nine steals and eight rejections, while turning the ball over 17 times.
GAHS sophomore Alex Barnes led the victors on offense with 22 points and four assists. Blue Angels freshman Maddy Petro scored 11 points and hauled in nine rebounds, while fellow freshman Ryelee Sipple recorded a double-double of 10 points and 11 boards.
Hunter Copley contributed seven points to the winning cause, Macey Siders chipped in with four points, while Arianna Jordan came up with three markers. The Blue Angel defense was led by Barnes with three steals and Copley with five blocks.
Sydney Mullins led the Lady Rockets with 23 points, followed by Emma Jadrnicek with 12. Tory Doles scored five points in the setback, Emily Kisor and Sydney Spencer both added four points, while Ashley Compston scored three and Alexis Bouska scored one.
This is the lone scheduled meeting between these non-conference foes this season. After a trip to Rock Hill on Monday, the Blue Angels will return to Centenary to host Ironton on Thursday.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.