By Rob Kiser
Piqua girls basketball coach Brian Gillespie doesn’t feel like his team’s record really reflects how good they can be.
And through in the early going in the GWOC North, his team has been in every game.
The Lady Indians just have to overcome one bad stretch, as was the case in a 52-39 loss to Sidney Wednesday night at Garbry Gymnasium.
The loss dropped Piqua to 1-6 overall and 0-3 in GWOC American play, while Sidney improved to 3-3 and 2-1.
“We seem to have on bad stretch every game,” Gillespie said. “Tonight it was the first quarter. We came out nervous at the start of the game. I don’t know why. There was really no reason for us to be nervous.”
Sidney jumped out to a 13-4 lead after one quarter, with 6-foot-2 Celena Taborn scoring 11 points.
On one possession, Taborn got her own rebound four times before finally scoring.
“I don’t think we understood the strength and physicality it takes to guard her (Celina Taborn),” Gillespie said. “We were just standing there with our hands up and that is not going to do it.”
It was a relatively even game after that.
With Taborn sitting out the final six minutes of the second quarter with two fouls, Piqua trailed just 22-14 at the break after baskets by Tylah Yeomans and Kelsey Magoteaux.
Sidney immediately opened the lead to 15 in the third quarter after a three by Alina Kindle and baskets by Carrie Nuss and Taborn.
But, with Kelsey Bachman scoring six points, the Lady Indians closed to within 38-29 by quarters end and stayed within 10 much of the fourth quarter.
“We played them pretty even after the first quarter,” Gillespie said. “It is a long process. We have some new bodies on the team this year that weren’t with us before. Tylah Yeomans is a freshman. She is a good athlete and going to be a good player, but she is learning by fire and getting valuable experience.”
Yeomans and Magoteaux both had eight points to lead Piqua.
Gray had seven points, nine rebounds, four assists and two steals; while Lily Stewart also scored seven points.
Lauren Williams filled out the stat sheet with five rebounds, five steals and four assists.
Taborn led Sidney with 22 points and 15 rebounds, while Nuss added 10 points and Kindle scored eight.
Piqua was 17 of 53 from the floor for 32 percent and four of nine from the line for 44 percent.
Sidney was 18 of 38 from the floor for 47 percent and 11 of 17 from the line for 65 percent.
Sidney won the battle of the boards 29-25, but had 23 turnovers to Piqua’s 15.
“I think now that we have seen most of the teams in the league, we know we are not that far away,” Gillespie said. “I still believe we have a really good team and you will see that in the second half.”
Piqua gets another chance to show that when the Lady Indians host Troy Wednesday.
Kiara Miller 2-1-5, Carrie Nuss 3-3-10, Alina Kindle 3-0-8, Hayley Powers 0-1-1, Celena Taborn 9-3-22, Carly Dean 0-2-2, Emma Wiford 0-0-0, Braxtyn Lee 1-0-3, Kyana Johnson 0-1-1. Totals: 18-11-52.
Lauren Williams 1-1-3, Tylah Yeoman 4-0-8. Kelsey Magoteaux 4-0-8, Lauryn Gray 3-1-7, Lily Stewart 3-0-7, Emily Powell 0-0-0, Kelsey Bachman 2-2-6, Claire Went 0-0-0. Totals: 17-4-39.
3-point field goals — Sidney: Nuss, Kindle (2), Taborn, Lee. Piqua: Stewart.
Score By Quarters
Sidney 13 22 38 52
Piqua 4 14 29 39
Records: Sidney 3-3 (2-1), Piqua 1-6 (0-3).