GOESSEL — Things didn’t start well for the Elyria Christian School girls basketball team.

After struggling to score early, the Eagles began to chip away but were playing from behind the entire night.

Elyria progressed as the game went on, but 30 turnovers were too many to overcome in a 45-28 loss to Goessel Friday night. The loss drops Elyria to 3-5 on the season.

“We had another very slow start offensively,” Elyria head coach Greg Fields said. “I was hoping that we were better prepared to handle their pressure, but Goessel did a great job getting our girls sped up.”

The Eagles were held scoreless until the 1:22 mark of the first quarter when senior Bailey Unruh connected on a layup. The Eagles had plenty of opportunities in the first quarter, but Unruh’s layup was the only one that connected the entire quarter.

“I thought we got better at making those open looks as the game went on, but anytime we get an open look we need to capitalize,” Fields said.

Elyria only trailed 7-2 after one and brought the game within two points early in the second quarter as Unruh found senior Christin Vetter on the pick and roll for an and-one. But Goessel responded on its following possession with an and-one, and closed out the half on a 12-6 run for a 22-11 lead at the break.

The action was even over the course of the third quarter, with Goessel holding a slight 10-9 advantage. The Eagles narrowed the deficit to 10 points, but Goessel’s Kara Burkholder nailed a pair of free throws with six seconds left to extend the Bluebird lead to 12 after three quarters.

Elyria was held to two points for much of the fourth quarter, but three baskets in the final minute will hopefully give the Eagles some momentum heading into their next game. Goessel scored 13 points in the fourth quarter for the 17-point win.

“Our biggest problem tonight was going up against an incredibly athletic Goessel team,” Fields said. “They’re a very good team; credit them for the defense they played.”

Unruh and Vetter led the Elyria offense with eight points a piece. As a team, the Eagles shot 11 of 36 from the field for 30 percent.

Elyria is next in action on Tuesday when the Eagles face Herington in the opening round of the Centre Classic. The Eagles defeated Herington, 45-31, back on Dec. 15.

Contact Gallagher Martin by email at gmartin@mcphersonsentinel.com and follow him on Twitter @GMartinSentinel