Lady Braves come up short in bid for regional title PDF Print E-mail

Momentum and times were both friends and enemies of the Borden Lady Braves last Saturday at the Class A girls’ basketball regional at West Washington High School.

In the regional semi-finals, both were on Borden’s side as they upset the only remaining undefeated girls’ basketball team in the state, Barr Reeve, 29-28.
In the championship against Northeast Dubois, the Lady Braves ran out of time and came up short, falling to the Lady Jeeps 35-31.
Northeast Dubois led by as many as 12 late in the third quarter, but a basket from just inside the line at the top of the key from Abby Ellis, cut the margin to 10, 31-21 heading into the fourth quarter.
That basket sparked a run that pulled Borden to within striking distance.
Erin Mikel scored the first two baskets of the quarter, cutting the Lady Jeeps’ lead to six, 31-35.
NE Dubois answered, but another basket by Ellis got Borden rolling a again.
Her shot trimmed the lead to six, 33-27 and Mikel scored again with just under 2:40 to cut the margin by two more, 33-29.
Ellis scored one more time and the lead was just two, 33-31 with just under 54 seconds remaining.
It looked as if Dubois would run out the clock and force Borden, which had just two team fouls at the point, to foul in order to stop the clock.
They did that, but the Lady Jeeps’ Taylor Borden broke free and attempted a base-line jumper.
She missed, Borden’s Shelby Kirchgessner got the rebound and the Lady Braves were looking to tie.
A shot attempt failed, but Borden’s Leslie Beatty grabbed the offensive rebound, but the Lady Braves lost possession after a Dubois player forced a jump ball.
The Lady Jeeps iced the game with two free throws.
Borden’s effort was remarkable considering the start of the two halves.
NE Dubois opened the game on a n 8-0 run and then started the second half with a 9-2 surge.
The Lady Jeeps will now advance to Saturday’s semi-state at Bedford North Lawrence and will take on Southwestern Shelbyville.
In the semi-finals against Barr Reeve, Borden controlled the game from the tip.
They led 8-0 and 10-3 at the end of the first quarter thanks primarily to a box-and-one defense and a strong offensive start by Mikel.
She scored six points in the opening quarter and Allison Bishop had four.
Mikel remained hot in the second quarter. She converted an and-one opportunity early that stretched Borden’s lead to 10, 13-3.
Barr Reeve answered and began to claw their way back in the contest. A basket by Kayti Taylor pulled the Lady Vikings to within five, 15-10.
Mikel again answered for Borden.
She scored back to back baskets and Borden’s lead was nine, 19-10 at halftime.
Barr Reeve made a push in the third quarter to make a game of it and the Lady Braves helped with continued turnovers.
After three quarters of play they had 19 turnovers.
Borden managed just four points in the third quarter and had their lead cut in half, 23-18 heading into the fourth.
BR got two quick baskets by Jenna Knepp and were down one, 23-22 and seemed to have all the momentum.
Borden got back-to-back baskets by Allison Rademacher, one of which came off an assist by Mikel that stretched the lead back to five, 27-22 with 3:45 remaining.
Knepp answered again with another basket, but the Lady Braves’ Carson Casey drained two free throws to answer.
Knepp again scored a basket that trimmed her team’s deficit to one point, 29-28 and Borden missed two front-ends of bonus opportunities, but had enough on the defensive end to pull off the upset.
“This win means a lot,” Kirchgessner said after the morning game. “We can’t let it go to our heads though. We have to get ready for NE Dubois.”
Kirchgessner finished with no points against the Lady Vikings, but ran the Borden offense and hit the gass for three three rebounds, one of which helped secure the win.
“We knew rebounding would be a key so we had to put it all on the line and crash the boards.”
Mikel led both teams with 13 points and also grabbed five rebounds. She even handled the ball late in the game.
She looked exhausted as she walked off the court.
“It was a tough game, but we knew we were going to have to work for 32 minutes if we wanted to pull off the win,” Mikel said.
The Lady Braves finished the season with an 18-7 record and have won back-to-back sectionals for the first time since 2002-03.