Total team effort by B-A girls gives coach Lovrich first win

Tuesday night will always be remembered by first-year head Lady Blue Devils basketball coach Nick Lovrich. A complete team effort featuring strong inside play and rebounding paved the way for a Bellwood-Antis 54-44 victory over the Lady Trojans of Mount Union.
In a game played in the friendly confines of the B-A Senior High School gym, the Lady Devils, who evened their season mark at 1-1, came out of the lockerroom already on fire. Stephanie Hatch nailed a pair of three-pointers and Katie Gardner hit two quick buckets inside to propel the red-hot Blue Devils to a 14-6 lead at the end of the opening quarter.
The Bellwood-Antis girls lead was cut to 21-20 at the half, with a sloppy second-quarter that featured several B-A turnovers that led directly to Mount Union points.
“We really hit a lull in the second quarter,” said coach Lovrich. “We made some mistakes and Mount Union was right there to capitalize on them.”
The third quarter went back-and-forth as the Lady Blue Devils and Lady Trojans exchanged buckets. Bellwood-Antis escaped with a key one-point margin after three on a pair of three-point plays. The first on a trey from the distance by Emily Worthing and the second a Stephanie Hatch bucket and foul shot.
The fourth quarter was all Lady Blue Devil as B-A pulled away for the 10 triumph. The Bellwood-Antis girls used the inside play and rebounding of Stephanie Hatch and Katie Gardner, both of whom finished the night with double-doubles. Gardner, who missed last Friday’s encounter with Tyrone, was clearly the spark that Bellwood-Antis needed pumping in a game-high 19 points to go with 11 rebounds, while Stephanie Hatch was just behind with 18 points and 10 boards.
Gardner’s consistent scoring and rebounding helped the Lady Eagles to finish off Mount Union down the stretch.
“Rebounding was clearly the key for us tonight,” said Lovrich. “Katie (Gardner) and Stephanie (Hatch) were big, but they couldn’t have done it without the box-out efforts of the whole team.”
Lovrich also cited free-throw shooting as a key in the win. The Lady Blue Devils were 16 of 22 from the foul line, including 10 of 14 in the final quarter.
All five B-A starters got into the scoring column with Ashley Edevane scoring five points, Emily Worthing adding four and Ashley Smith netting two free-throws for two points. Rachael Meredith, who wasn’t in the lineup against Tyrone, contributed six points.
The Mount Union Lady Trojans placed three scorers in double digits with Lang scoring 13, Mansberger had 1 and Enders scoring 10.
The Lady Blue Devils will travel to Amesville to play Moshannon Valley on Thursday, Dec. 5. Junior Varsity action will begin at 6 p.m. with the varsity game following at 7:30.
Bellwood-Antis freshman Lauren Carter led all scorers with 17 points as the Bellwood-Antis junior varsity girls won their second straight ballgame defeating Mount Union 52-24.
“The jayvees got a big lift from the defensive play of Lindsey Claar and point-guard play of Samantha Erickson,” said coach Lovrich as the junior version of the Lady Blue Devils stretched their record to 2-0.
Bellwood-Antis 54 Mount Union 44
BELLWOOD-ANTIS – Worthing 1 1-2 4, Edevane 1 2-2 5, Hatch 6 4-5 18, Smith 0 2-4 2, Gardner 7 5-6 19, Meredith 2 2-3 6, Sprankle 0 0-0 0, Erickson 0 0-0 0, Ridgeway 0 0-0 0, TOTALS- 17 16-22 54.
MOUNT UNION – Benson 1 0-3 2, Lang 6 1-2 13, Mansberger 5 0-0 11, Enders 3 3-4 10, O’Donnell 2 4-6 8, Vaughn 0 0-0 0, Corbin 0 0-0 0, Smith 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 17 8-15 44.
3-point goals Bellwood-Antis 4 (Hatch 2, Worthing 1, Edevane 1) Mount Union 2 (Mansberger 1, Enders 1)