February 1st, 2020

Sacred Heart holds off Ryle in LIT semifinals

Dalton Pence 

Staff Writer 

Sacred Heart holds off Ryle in LIT semifinals
SHA advances to LIT Finals/ photo by Dalton Pence

Top-ranked Sacred Heart held off Ryle in the girls’ LIT semifinals at Valley High School on Saturday afternoon. The Lady Raiders’ full-court attempt at the end of the game didn’t fall and the Valkyries advance to tomorrow’s championship at 1:00 against Manual at Valley. 

“It’s exciting”, Sacred Heart head coach Donna Moir explained. “We haven’t been to the final in a couple years. The nerves got us down the street a little bit, but coming out on the winning end will help us in the long run.”


Senior Erin Toller came up big in the fourth quarter. Despite only having five points in the period, the University of Kentucky signee hit a pivotal three-pointer to halt a major Lady Raider run and recorded key offensive rebounds and an assist to Josie Gilvin on a layup attempt. 


“I expect her to make those plays”, Moir added. “She’s top-notch.”


Despite a slow start, the Valkyries showed signs of breaking away early, but Ryle continued to chip away at the lead, even with Maddie Scherr going 2/10 from the field in the first half. Destinee Marshall only missed one of her seven attempts in the half, scoring 15 and recording five assists. 


“I thought Destinee played a great game”, Moir said. “I thought her floor leadership was unbelievable, especially in the first half.”


Sacred Heart shot 10/20 (50%) from deep for the game, six of those coming before intermission.


“Callie Birk came in and went two-for-two from three and Triniti (Ralston) hit one in the first half, which were big”, she explained. They were paying a lot attention to Kristen (Clemons) and Erin; that allowed Destinee (Marshall) to get get some stuff in the first half.”


Ryle opened up the third quarter on a 6-0 run, that was quickly stopped by five straight points from Ralston. The back-and-forth scoring proved to be the case throughout the rest of the contest; whenever Ryle got close, Sacred Heart answered. 


“We’ve got three division one players out there on the floor”, Moir explained. “These seniors have played a lot of minutes for us and I don’t think they care who scores.”


Toller ended with 16 points, while Ralston had 12.


Oregon signee Maddie Scherr finished with 21 points, nine rebounds, and seven assists. For Moir, she was the focal point when defending the Lady Raiders.


“We tried to put somebody long on her”, she said. “Josie Gilvin does not get a whole lot of credit for what she does, but she played great defense. Her and Callie switched up on her, and we know soccer players can play defense.”


Ryle was also led by Abby Holtman and Brie Crittendon with 13 and 10 points, respectively. 


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