Brett Luke | The Journal Gazette South Side’s Taniece Chapman shoots over the Zionsville defense during the second quarter Saturday in the Class 4A regional finals at Kokomo High School.
Brett Luke | The Journal Gazette South Side’s Shamari Tyson drives past a Zionsville defender during Saturday’s Class 4A regional championship game at Kokomo High School.
Sunday, February 11, 2018 1:00 am
Archers not able to deal with height of Zionsville
AUBREE REICHEL | The Journal Gazette
KOKOMO – South Side was unable to combat the size of Zionsville in the Class 4A regional finals at Memorial Gymnasium as the Eagles advanced to face Penn in the semistate with a 67-50 win over the Archers.
“Zionsville, they definitely had height on us,” South Side's Taniece Chapman said. “That was something we'd never seen before. We just fought hard and gave it our all. We just did all we could do.
“We knew we had to play together as a team and fight, no matter what people thought. We played together as a team, and we wanted to go into the next game. We took it one game at a time and we wanted to represent Fort Wayne well.”
Zionsville, which upset No. 2 Carmel 54-49 in the semifinal, had 20 second-chance points on 15 offensive rebounds.
The Archers led for much of the first quarter, until a basket from Maddie Nolan gave the Eagles a 23-22 lead to end the quarter. South Side got within 28-27 with 2:30 left in the second, but Zionsville stretched it to 47-33 in the third quarter and never let up.
“They handled our press,” Archers coach Juanita Goodwell said. “I don't know if we just weren't in the right position, but they got to our press and we had to make adjustments that we just weren't ready for. (Nolan) was impressive tonight. We did everything we could to collapse on her, stop her. She did everything she needed to do to get her team to victory tonight.”
Nolan finished with 28 points for the Eagles (21-5), 18 in the first half, and Delaney Richason added 18.
South Side was led by 20 points from Mikeba Jones and 11 from Shamari Tyson.
Despite the disappointing loss, the Archers (23-5) won SAC tournament and sectional titles this season.
“We had a great season,” Tyson said. “We came together as a family. I've never seen anything like this. We had our ups and downs, but we were together as a family, so we got through those ups and downs.”
In the semifinal, South Side defeated Carroll 89-61.
Jaci Jones finished with 22 points on 6-of-8 shooting from beyond the arc, Tyson added 18 points and seven assists, Taniece Chapman had 17 points and 15 rebounds, and Mikeba Jones finished with 16 points.
Laney Steckler led the Chargers with 18 points and Kelli Damman had 17.
The Archers outscored the Chargers 31-12 in the final quarter after closing the third quarter on a 20-12 run after Carroll narrowed the South Side lead to 38-37.
It was tough ending to the season for Carroll, which won its second straight sectional championship this year,
“(The seniors are) going to be well missed,” Chargers coach Mark Redding said. “What they've done for the program; they've brought it back to respectability, they put us back on the map and that's what I said to them. I said, 'What you have done is created a tradition now that was once here,' and now they've brought it back.
“Those girls played hard at the very end, and it showed the true character of them. It's tough to say good-bye to those girls.”