That makes No. 29. The Lady Lions’ 63-30 romp over Batesville to the sectional title Saturday extended its state record to 29 total sectional titles. The Lady Lions opened the day with a 69-45 victory over Lawrenceburg in the semifinal and capped the day with the 33-point victory over the Lady Bulldogs to win the sectional title.
With the title, the Lady Lions improve to 19-4 on the season and earn a trip to the Jasper Regional where they will play in the second semifinal against Evansville Mater Dei (23-1). The first regional semifinal is Madison (16-2) against Southridge (16-5) at 10 a.m. this Saturday. The regional championship game will be at 8 p.m.
The day started with a victory over Lawrenceburg. Rushville jumped out to a 24-13 lead after the first quarter and didn’t look back. The Lady Lions scored the first 11 points of the first quarter with Mackenzie Campbell opening the spurt with a free throw and her 3-pointer capping it. Later in the quarter, the Lady Tigers closed to within five on back-to-back 3-pointers by Ashlee Miller, but Campbell and Kaitlyn Howe combined to score the next six points to give the Lady Lions the 24-13 lead.
Rushville outscored the Lady Tigers 20-13 in the second quarter. Keragan Niehoff scored on the break to open the action. Niehoff’s five points around a 3-pointer by Brooke Ash ended the half with the Lady Lions leading 44-26.
The Lady Tigers hung around in the third. Four straight from Riley Brunner opened the third quarter. Rushville came right back with buckets by Howe, Kelsi Ash and Niehoff to extend the lead to 18 points. Lawrenceburg cut the lead to 16 late in the quarter, but a traditional three-point play by Niehoff gave the Lady Lions a 55-36 lead heading to the fourth quarter.
The Lady Lions did not led Lawrenceburg back in the game in the final eight minutes – outscoring the Lady Tigers 14-9 in the frame. The lead grew to 30 points on a traditional three-point play by Howe. The Lady Tigers could only close to within 22 points the rest of the way as the Lady Lions advanced 69-45.