Warren loses early lead, falls to Patriots 48-42

JORDAN HOLLAND The Marietta Times Warren’s Kate Liston drives and goes up for a basket during a high school girls basketball game against Parkersburg South Wednesday in Vincent. South won, 48-42.

VINCENT — To say Parkersburg South senior guard Devin Hefner took over Wednesday evening’s clash against Warren would be a little bit of an understatement.

With her team trailing by six points with four and a half minutes to play in the game, Hefner scored 12 consecutive points to turn a six-point deficit into a six-point advantage as the visiting Patriots notched a hard fought 48-42 win over the previously unbeaten Warriors.

South was able to overcome a 21-0 first quarter run by the Warriors to notch their fifth victory of the season in six attempts.

“I told our girls that’s as nice of a win as we have had in a little while to have to come in here on the road against a really good Warren team and get a win,” said Parkersburg South head coach Ed Davis. “Anyway you can find to pull one off over here is a great accomplishment.”

South got off to a great start as one field goal by Allie Taylor and a pair by Hefner gave them a quick 6-0 lead before the Warriors came off the mat in a big way.

Warren held South scoreless over the final six minutes of the quarter while scoring 18 unanswered points to pull out to a 12-point lead at the end of the first quarter.

The Warriors kept that momentum going into the second quarter as senior Kate Liston knocked down a 3-pointer to push the Warren lead to 21-6.

Just as quickly as the Pats dug themselves into a hole they managed to climb back out of it as they used a 12-3 run of their own to trim the lead to 24-18 paced by four points from sophomore post Makenna Winans and five by Taylor.

Warren sophomore Caspen Ford provided a huge lift off the bench in the opening half as she canned three triples including one with two minutes to play in the half, but the Patriots scored the final nine points to come all the way back and tie the score at 27-27 at the break.

Davis felt the rally late in the second half played a pivotal role in his team’s come-from-behind win.

“It is such a credit to our kids to come all the way back from a run like that,” said Davis. “They never lost their cool and I thought that closing out the first half the way we did was big for us. I think that gave us a little momentum for the second half.”

Neither team could manage much offense at all in the third period as both teams converted just one field goal with South winning the quarter by a 7-5 margin to carry a 34-32 lead into the final eight minutes.

Warren got off to a great start in the final period as Peyton Bowe tied the game with a driving basket and senior Emily Jackson followed with back-to-back 3-pointers to increase the lead to 40-32 with 4:30 to play.

Hefner got the comeback started when she intercepted a Warren pass near halfcourt and cashed it in at the other end and then converted a pair of freebies after being fouled on a drive to the basket.

After yet another Warren turnover, Hefner hit perhaps the biggest South shot of the game when she connected from long range for a 3 to give South a 41-40 lead with less than two minutes to play.

Yet another Warrior miscue led to two more from Hefner at the free throw line before she capped an amazing four minute stretch by coming up with another steal, which resulted in an old-fashioned three-point play and a 46-40 South lead.

“That’s just shows how strong we are as a team that we were able to come back from that many points down,” said Hefner, who lead all scorers with 23 points in the game. “We changed our defense and I think it picked up our intensity and got them rattled.”

Davis had high praise for Hefner as well as the rest of his team for its clutch performance down the stretch.

“Devin really took over and did a great job out front on defense and I though the other kids really did a great job as well,” said Davis. “Devin did a great job and I am thrilled with every single one of our kids.”

In addition to her 23 points, Hefner pulled down five rebounds and came up with four steals, while Taylor filled up her stat sheet nicely as well with 11 points, nine boards, five steals and four assists.

Liston led the way for Warren (6-1) with 13 points and nine rebounds while Ford and Jackson added nine points apiece.

Warren head coach Amy Colgrove was honored prior to the game after recording her 100th win as Warrior head coach Saturday in a victory over South Webster.