COLUMBUS - LaGrange High girls’ head coach Jan Jones liked what she saw from her team in the first half Wednesday night.
Facing a powerful Columbus team, LaGrange hung tough, and it went to the break facing a manageable 13-point deficit.
Things came unraveled in the third period for the visiting Lady Grangers, though.
LaGrange didn’t score a point in the third quarter, and Columbus went on to capture a 59-34 victory.
The Lady Grangers (3-8 overall) fell to 1-1 in Region 5-AAAA heading into Friday’s game at Alexander.
“If we could play every game like we did the first half, we could be competitive with some people,” LaGrange coach Jan Jones said. “We played the best first half we’ve played all year. Now we have to put a whole game together.”
Columbus, which has only lost once this season, surged to an 18-9 lead after the first quarter.
By the half, Columbus was on top 33-18, but LaGrange was right there.
“For us, the biggest thing was to try to keep it close and battle, and we did that in the first half,” Jones said. “Now, if we can just complete a ballgame.”
The third quarter was a tough one for the Lady Grangers, who were outscored 11-0 to fall behind 44-20.
With Andrea Heflin knocking down a pair of 3-pointers, LaGrange heated up and scored 14 points in the fourth period, but the deficit was too great.
Heflin, who made three 3-pointers, scored 13 points to lead the Lady Grangers, with eight of those points coming in the fourth quarter.
Antoinesha Dozier added nine points for LaGrange, and Erica Daniel scored eight points.
Looking ahead to this weekend’s region games against Alexander and Fayette County, Jones hopes the team can build on its first-half performance against Columbus.
“On defense in the first half, we were rotating well. And when the ball went up, we were rebounding. We were limiting them to one shot,” Jones said. “But, we have to be able to come back with that same energy in the second half.”