LITTLE RIVER — It took the Little River High School girls basketball team nearly 30 minutes of playing time to take the lead over Canton-Galva High School Friday night in Little River. But once the Redksins did, they never looked back.
Little River was held scoreless in the first quarter, as Canton-Galva scored the game’s first 11 points. Over the final three quarters, the Redskins chipped away at the lead before finally jumping ahead with 4:10 left in the game on an Isabelle Eberle free throw.
Despite not scoring a single point in the first quarter, Little River head coach Trey Look wanted his team playing better on the defensive end.
“We were obviously struggling offensively,” Look said, “but on the defensive end we weren’t talking, we weren’t moving, we weren’t being as aggressive as we usually are.”
For Canton-Galva, head coach Dean Scott chalks this loss up to inexperience. The Eagles have two seniors, one junior, and 11 underclassmen on the roster.
“It’s a mind set the girls have to get that they can finish games,” Scott said. “We’re growing as we go along — I like to see that.”
Canton-Galva led 11-0 after the first quarter, but it didn’t take long in the second quarter for Little River to end the shutout.
Emma McBride jumped out in a passing lane for a steal, and took it coast to coast for a layup to put Little River on the board 20 seconds into the quarter. Little River would score eight unanswered to make it a three-point game.
Canton-Galva responded with an 11-6 run over the remainder of the half, giving the Eagles a 22-14 lead at the break.
However, the Redskins won the third quarter 13-8 to cut the deficit to three.
There were a total of seven points scored in the fourth quarter — all of which were scored by the home team. Two free throws McBride and one more from Melanie Renken down the stretch earned Little River a hard-fought Wheat State League win.
“I was proud of our girls the way they fought back,” Look said. “[Canton-Galva] is a good team, they’re active and they were shooting well. To hold them to eight points in one half is pretty dang good.”
Little River featured a balanced attack with McBride leading the team with eight points. Renken scored seven, while Eberle scored six.
Canton-Galva’s Kaysha Unruh led all scorers with nine points.
The Little River girls are now 6-2 on the season and next play on Tuesday at home against Centre. Canton-Galva drops to 3-5 and hosts Goessel on Tuesday.
Contact Gallagher Martin by email at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @GMartinSentinel