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A Stinging Loss

  • Harrisburg's Essence Sanders drives to the basket against Nashville's Alyssa Cole to start the second half Monday night at Red Bud High School in the Class 2A Sectional semifinal.

    Harrisburg's Essence Sanders drives to the basket against Nashville's Alyssa Cole to start the second half Monday night at Red Bud High School in the Class 2A Sectional semifinal.
    SPYDER DANN | mdann@dailyregister.com

 
By Spyder Dann mdann@dailyregister.com
updated: 2/13/2019 12:47 PM

In combat sports, whether it be boxing or ultimate fighting, trilogys are always the rage.

Harrisburg and Nashville girls squared off for the third time in as many years in a heavyweight fight that much like the other two battles were a knock-down, drag-out fight.

An eight minute stretch was the difference however, as Nashville's upper cut in the third quarter dropped the 'Dogs as the Hornettes earned a 10-point 44-34 victory in the Red Bud 2A Sectional semifinal Monday night.

As cliche as it is, Monday night's main event was really a tale of two halves.

Harrisburg came out like a well-oiled machine and took a 12-point, 22-10 halftime lead, but Nashville (21-10), up against the ropes, came out swinging in the second half and held Harrisburg to one-point, a Brooke Meylor free throw with 18 seconds to play.

Prior to that, Nashville took its first lead since it was 2-0 in the first quarter when Emily Stern burried a bucket with 54 seconds to play to give the Hornettes a 23-22 lead. Meylor's free throw tied the game, but Nashville got a bucket to close out the third quarter up 25-23.

In the final eight minutes, Nashville outscored Harrisburg 19-11, where Hornette junior forward Rylee Luechtfeld had eight points.

"We just didn't score in the third quarter," Harrisburg head coach Jake Stewart said. "I thought we did a really good job of running our offense and getting what we wanted. Our third quarter was like their first half and unfortunately they scored fifteen points. We were only down by two going into the fourth I guess and we just had two bad quarters. We let them score too much in the fourth quarter though."

Harrisburg built a 14-6 first quarter lead and was helped out by a pair of 3-pointers from Madeline Rider and Meylor in the second quarter as Harrisburg cruised into the locker room with a 22-10 lead.

Meylor was the only Harrisburg (28-6) player to finish in double figures as the senior guard scored 12 points.

Karsyn Davis added eight for the Bulldogs, while Madeline Rider scored six points. Essence Sanders finished with four points, while Alli Ferrell and Summer Sanders both tacked on two points.

In addition to Luechtefeld's 16 points, Libby Ahlers also scored 16 points and Alyssa Cole tacked on 10 points. Stern had two.

Spyder Dann covers prep and college sports for the Southern Illinois Local Media News Group. Follow him on Twitter: @spydieshooter.