Lady Pacer year ends with Sectional loss to South Ripley


Less than a week later and in a different location; the ultimate outcome didn’t change on Tuesday night as the Switzerland County Lady Pacer closed their season with a 64-25 loss to South Ripley in the opening round of the Austin Sectional.

Offense was again an issue for the Lady Pacers, as Switzerland County managed only 12 points over the first three periods – including not scoring at all in the second quarter — before doubling their output in the final stanza.

South Ripley, just as they did in last Thursday’s regular season finale, raced out to a big lead early, outscoring the Lady Pacers by a 22-6 count after the first quarter.

Senior Whitley Schirmer had four points in the opening stanza on a field goal and two freethrows; while Rylee Hankins had the other score with an inside bucket.

The Lady Raiders were working inside and outside early, getting seven points from Toria Tucker and two points from Elexah Roepke inside; while Kiley Sparks had six points including a three-pointer from the outside.

Up big early, the South Ripley offense slowed down in the second quarter, scoring just eight points; but Switzerland County never got anything going, failing to score a single point in the eight minute span – and the halftime break came with South Ripley in front by a 30-6 margin.

South Ripley got rolling again after the break, scoring 17 points in the third while Switzerland County had just seven points. The Lady Raider defense held Switzerland County to a lone three-pointer by Schirmer over the first half of the third period; moving out to a 41-9 advantage, with Schirmer adding a three-pointer for Switzerland County.

As the quarter closed, the Lady Pacers also got a basket from Aleiah Thomas and two freethrows from Caitlynn Morris, but the period closed with South Ripley in front 47-13.

The final quarter saw both teams substitute liberally, giving all of the players the chance to have a Sectional experience; and Switzerland County got warmed up offensively, scoring 12 points, while the Lady Raiders finished off the game with 17 more.

Schirmer capped her high school career with a pair of three-pointers in the quarter before heading to the bench for a final time; while Hankins, Hope Tankersley, and Thomas also had baskets.

It was the final game for seniors Schirmer, Tankersley, Morris, Taylar Jordan; and also for Mallory Phagan, who was injured at the midway point of the season and was not able to participate in the sectional.

The Lady Pacers had six field goals; three three-pointers; and suffered by being just 4-for-10 from the freethrow line.

South Ripley was led in scoring by Roepke with 17 points; with Tucker in double figures with 12 and Sparks made it three in double figures with 11.

Morgan Peetz had seven points in the game; Hannah Schwarte had six; and Julia Rea and Cierra Copeland each added four. Mariah Gentile had three points in the contest.

South Ripley had 20 field goals in the game; five three-pointers, and were 9-for-13 from the freethrow line.

With the win, South Ripley now moves into tomorrow (Friday) night’s semifinal against Southwestern; while the other semifinal will feature host Austin – big winners over Milan in Tuesday’s first game – against North Decatur.

The two winners from the semifinals will then square off for the Sectional championship on Saturday night.