The Paper photo by Lori Poteet 
Senior Paige Schueren was one 3-pointer away from tying Crawfordsville’s single-game record.
The Paper photo by Lori Poteet
Senior Paige Schueren was one 3-pointer away from tying Crawfordsville’s single-game record.

The Crawfordsville girls’ basketball team had a tall order Tuesday in the first game of Sectional 25 play against the Lebanon Tigers. The Tigers were undefeated in the Sagamore Athletic Conference and they showed their dominance in a 19-0 start on their way to a 71-31 win.

The Athenians found two lights to help guide them through with senior Paige Schueren’s 3-pointers and sophomore Jazmine Hall’s rebounding.

“What a great way for Paige to go out,” Athenian coach Tony Thomas said. “Her last several games she has done a really nice job.”

After Schueren’s 17 points in Crawfordsville’s win against Frankfort, she put up 20 points with six 3-pointers to end her high school career. She ended fourth in all-time 3-pointers (98) for Crawfordsville girls and was one away from tying the school record with Holly Thompson and Abby Thomas for seven in a game.

“We went out with a good finish,” Schueren said. “It was nice to give the assists to the team and to play as a team.”

Her first three bumped the first quarter score to 26-7. Her next three 3’s in the second quarter helped the Athenians to their quarter-high of 13 points with Lebanon only getting 16.

However, the pressure was too much for the young Athenians and the Tigers sprinted away with the game after the half.

“The kids played hard,” Thomas said. “They were frustrated at times with the pressure. Lebanon gets you playing faster than what you are comfortable playing and before long you are making mistakes you never made before.”

The second ray of hope was the Athenians’ rebounding. Sophomore Jazmine Hall ended with 10 rebounds and eight points. She has been averaging about 15 per game.

“They worked hard to keep her off the glass,” Thomas said.

However, despite being outrebounded 27-24, Lebanon caused 32 Athenian turnovers with their full-court press which was Crawfordsville’s ultimate downfall.

“At first you got to get the ball inbounds then you have to avoid the double team and make a pass then you have to get it across half-court line then you got to run an offense and then you got to get a good shot,” Thomas pleaded. “There’s too many of those “you gotta” for a young team to do.”

Tiger Kristen Spolyar finished with 36 points for the game-high. Brooke Montgomery went 4-for-4 in the first quarter ending with 22.

Crawfordsville finished 2-21, 1-6 SAC while Lebanon will continue to Wednesday’s game against Greencastle at 6 p.m.

“The losing did not bother me because I thought, for the most part, we continually improved which was out theme this year,” Thomas concluded. He added that Schueren has been the only player he coached for five seasons (one in sixth grade).

“She has had a sterling career at the school with volleyball, soccer, track and basketball as well as being No. 10 student in the class,” he said. “She is the only player I will ever coach for five seasons so she is a special kid in a lot of ways. It has been a lot of fun.”

The senior gave some words of parting advice to the team for next year.

“Continue to learn and trust in each other. Definitely build off all the experiences and memories you’ve had this year because they will fly by and before you know it, you will be a senior tomorrow.”