Shelbyville girls basketball almost threw a knockout punch in the 1st quarter on Thursday. Meridian survived the punch and came back to wear the Rams down and win 48-30.
The Rams scored over half their points in the first 8:00. They bludgeoned Meridian with an 18-7 run. It was shades of the first game of the season, where they energy could have been credited to Space Jam juice.
Holly Metzger nailed a 3 to open her scoring. She was fouled and made both free throws and then a deuce for all 7 of her points. Rheannah Donald scored three times for 6 pf her 8 points. Freshman Trinity Wade had a deuce and 1-of-2 free throws and Sheila Williams scored.
Emma Jackson had a deuce and a trey for the Hawks and Emily Johnson a two. However, the script flipped in the 2nd.
Meridian posted a 15-6 run. Jackson scored twice, Ellen Jackson hit a 3 and Johnson another two. Kaitlyn Parker made a free throw and a 3 and Alexi Jones made two foul shots.
Wade and Donald scored again, once each. Metzger didn't, but Isabel Logue got on the board with a two. Shelby held on to a shaky 2-point lead at the half, 24-22.
The ground opened up in the 3rd. The Hawks swallowed the Rams with a 9-2 run. Emma Jackson had a trey and a deuce. Kaelee Stockton scored from the floor and made 1-of-3 free throws. Parker made 1-of-2 throws. The only Ram scored came on a Wade bucket.
Shelby was in search of mojo in the 4th to turn things around, trailing by 5, 31-26. It never showed up. Wade scored two more times. She had all six 2nd half points.
Meanwhile, Meridian shot free throws to ice the game and kick dirt in the grave. Emma Jackson made a 2 and then went to the line to make 4-of-5 free throws. Parker sank a 3 and Jones shot six free throws, making 4, then hit a two. Johnson took a 2-of-2 trip to the stripe in the 17-4 final run.
Jasckson finished with a game-high 20 points (2-3s), including 4-of-5 free throws. She was followed by Parker (2-3s) and Jones (6/8 FTs)with 8 points, each.
Wade led the Rams with 11 points, scoring a bucket in each quarter, with 2 in the 4th. Donald followed with 8 points all from the floor, all in the 1st half. Metzger finished with 7 (1-3).
Meridian only had one more field goal than the Rams, but 5 of them were 3s and Shelby had just 1. That gave the Hawks a 33-27 edge. Shelby shot just 3-of-4 at the line, while the Hawks shot 15-of-22, stretching their margin to 18 points.
Shelbyville is to play at Mulberry Grove on Monday January 14.
Meridian 48, Shelbyville 30
Ram stats: Wade 11 (5 FGs, 1/2 FTs), Donald 8 (4 FGs), Metzger 7 (1-2, 1-3 pt FGs, 2/2 FTs). Williams 2 (FG), Logue 2 (FG). Team FGs 13. 3-Pointers: (Metzger). Team FTs 3-of-4.
M'dian stats: Em Jackson 20 (5-2s, 2-3 pt FGs, 4/5 FTs), Jones 8 FG, 6/8 FTs), Parker 8 2-3 pt FGs, 2/4 FTs), Johnson 6 (2 FGs, 2/2 FTs), El Jackson 3 (FG), Stockton 3 (FG, 1/3 FTs). Team FGs 14. 3-Pointers: 5 (Em Jackson 2, Parker 2, El Jackson). Team FTs 15-of-22.