BERLIN -- There wasn’t consensus between Reynoldsburg High School girls basketball coach Jack Purtell and senior guard Yamonie Jenkins regarding what might have cost the Raiders a chance at victory Jan. 21 against Twinsburg in the Classic in the Country at Berlin Hiland.
The way Purtell saw it, Twinsburg’s 31-20 rebounding advantage was the biggest difference, as the Raiders blew a seven-point third-quarter deficit and lost 45-38.
The way Jenkins saw it, Reynoldsburg was outscored 15-3 during a final period in which the Raiders went 0-for-5 from the floor and made just three of six from the free-throw line.
It also didn’t help that the Raiders committed seven fourth-quarter turnovers.
Reynoldsburg, which also lost to Twinsburg 49-41 in a Division I state semifinal last season and is fourth in the state poll, fell to 15-2.
“That was two good teams,” Purtell said. “I just felt like in the fourth quarter that they kind of battened down the hatches better than we did. I don’t think our post entry passes were very good sometimes. We wanted to get the ball inside. The whole key to the game for me is that if you win the boards, you win the game. We’re way bigger than them and they outrebounded us 31-20.”
Twinsburg, which is ranked first in the state and improved to 16-0, trailed the Raiders 12-6 after one quarter and 17-10 with 6 minutes, 37 seconds to go in the first half. The Tigers rallied to take a 22-19 halftime lead as Ashley Morrissette, a Purdue recruit, scored eight second-quarter points.
Reynoldsburg then got five points from Alyssa Rice, four from Destini Cooper and a 3-pointer from Deshay Thomas and led 35-28 with 1:01 to go in the third quarter.
Twinsburg again rallied, as Morrissette scored six of her 20 points in the fourth quarter.
Reynoldsburg fell behind 38-37 with 2:18 remaining and turned it over on the next possession. Morrissette then turned a steal into an easy basket to make it 40-37.
The Raiders scored their only other point with 48.3 seconds to go on a free throw by Jenkins that made it 42-38.
Char-dell Dunnigan led Twinsburg with 10 rebounds.
Rice led the Raiders with 17 points, but was limited to three rebounds. Nicole Orr and Thomas had six points apiece.
“They were really good at pressuring the ball,” Rice said. “We’ve got to handle the pressure and move off the dribble better.”