Jailynn Theisen

Jailynn Theisen (3) tries to get past Trinity Cook (20)

NEW LEXINGTON – The #9 seed Lady Panthers advanced to the second round of the Division III Sectional Tournament with a 58-27 victory over #24 seed Crooksville.

New Lex’s defense put the clamps on early, with Head Coach Jay Chadwell’s two-guard trap smothering the Lady Ceramics as soon as they crossed half-court. The hosts were causing turnover after turnover, leading to easy buckets from Lydia Stephens and Aubri Spicer.

The second quarter saw New Lex outscore Crooksville 22-2, as the Lady Panthers scored 19 points off of 14 turnovers in the half. Spicer scored 13 points and Stephens seven points in the second as the hosts led 38-17 at the break.

The third quarter continued New Lex’s way, as the hosts’ defensive prowess kept causing trouble for the visitors. The Lady Ceramics shot 29 percent from the floor and couldn’t get in any kind of groove, with the Lady Panther’s lead getting as high as 35 points.

Spicer led all scorers with 25 points and added four steals. Stephens added 15, including a transition three right before half-time.

The Lady Panthers will now travel to Leesburg Fairfield to take on the #8 seed Lions in the sectional finals. That matchup is slated for Wednesday, Feb 17 at 7 pm. The winner will head to districts to face either #1 seed Wheelersburg or #17 seed Portsmouth West.

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