Lovett managed just four second half points against a suffocating Columbia defense as the Lady Eagles hit for 31 for a runaway 60-23 Region 6-2A girls’ semifinal at Pace Academy’s Inman Gym on Thursday night.
Lovett (11-11) rallied from a 28-11 second quarter deficit with baskets from Natalie Marshall and Allie Odhe in the final 55 seconds of the first half to cut the deficit to 10 (29-19) at the half.
But after half it was all Lady Eagles (15-7) reeling off eight consecutive points, six quick ones by India Terrell and a steal for an easy basket by Mic’Kayla Spivey as the lead went to 37-19 in the first 3:11 of the third quarter.
Eloise Duffy drove for Lovett’s only third quarter score at the 4:27 mark and Columbia which forced 12 turnovers in the period answered with a 15-0 run kicked off by a Keyonna Giles three-pointer. Terrell had 12 points in the quarter including the final after turnovers to send Columbia to a 52-21 lead with a quarter to play.
Lovett got a basket on an offensive put back by AT Vaughn for their only points of the final period and Terrell added four more points to the Columbia cause as the Eagles slowed it down in the final 4:10 of the game.
Giles hit two three-pointers to open the game for Columbia and added a steal for a quick bucket to go with seven points from Terrell on the way to a 19-6 lead after one quarter.
A three-point play by freshman Nia Anderson made it 28-11 with 3:04 to play in the first half. Lovett finished the half on an 8-1 run on the back of six points by Odhe.
India Terrell who is closing in on a 1,300 point career hit for a game-high 25 points to lead Columbia and was joined in double figures by Keyonna Giles (17 points, 8 rebounds) and Nia Anderson 10 points.
Alli Odhe hit for a team-high 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead Lovett.
Columbia faces South Atlanta, 37-34 overtime winner over Pace, at 7:00 pm for the region championship at Pace Academy on Friday. The two teams have split a pair of games this season. South Atlanta won the first meeting 41-29 and Columbia won the rematch 43-36.
(B) Lovett 72, Columbia 59
The Lovett Lions avenged a regular season loss to the Columbia Eagles with a three-point barrage on the way to a 72-59 Region 6-2A semifinal win at Pace Academy on Thursday night.
After hitting eight three-pointers in the first half on the way to 38-28 lead at the break Lovett lead by 15 twice in the third quarter including 55-40 with 35 seconds to play in the period on a Christian Anderson three (his third of five on the night).
The Eagles would cut the lead to eight with a furious 8-1 run in the final 23 seconds keyed by a Kenneth Hardaway three. Jaden Baugh drove for a layup to cut it to 46-45 with 5.4 seconds.
A Lovett turnover led to an inbounds play under the basket with 2.4 seconds left where Rashad Headges inbounded to Mason Lockhart under the basket. Lockhart laid the ball up and in and was fouled. He completed the three-point play with the free throw to give Columbia some momentum heading into the fourth quarter.
The momentum was short lived as Lovett’s Anderson hit a pair of threes to open the final quarter and the lead ballooned back to 62-48 and pretty much ended the Eagles comeback.
Anderson would add four free throws around a Zach Minetola basket as Lovett climbed out to a 68-52 advantage with just 4:01 to play.
Columbia cut the lead to 11 on a Julius Lymons layup but would get no closer.
The Eagles fall to the consolation game and face KIPP Academy at 5:30 pm on Friday at Pace. Columbia defeated KIPP 76-34 earlier this season.
Thursday, Feb. 18
Boys Semifinals at Pace
Lovett (17-6) 72, Columbia (16-6) 59
Girls Semifinals at Pace
Columbia (15-7) 60, Lovett (11-11) 23
Friday, Feb. 19
Region 5-3A at GAC
Redan (10-7) vs. Sandy Creek (15-12), 4:00 pm
Columbia (16-6) vs. KIPP (9-11), 5:30 pm
Columbia (15-7) vs. South Atlanta (19-4), 7:00 pm