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Lady Pack fend off Corydon rally

Jellison nets 28

February 02, 2011
The visiting Crawford County Lady Pack held off a furious rally by upcoming sectional opponent Corydon Central last Tuesday night to earn a 61-57 win on the Lady Panthers' senior night. Crawford County held a double-digit lead late in the third quarter, saw it evaporate, then bounced back to get the win.

"It was good for us in two ways," Crawford County coach Alan Cox said. "One, we got the win, and, No. 2, it exposed a weakness that we've got. We hadn't had any trouble against it all year long, but you can bet we'll be working on that between now and sectional."

Crawford County’s Chelsea Jellison drives the lane for two of her 28 points in the Lady Pack’s 61-57 win. Jellison finished with six three-pointers. Photos by Wade Bell
Corydon Central got early threes by sisters Heather and Kayla Uhl for a 6-4 edge. Crawford County then switched to a box-and-one defense with junior Ashley Forbes chasing Heather Uhl to keep the three-point shooter in check. The two teams finished in a 9-all tie after the first eight minutes.

"We did really well with it," Crawford County junior Chelsea Jellison said of the box-and-one defense. "She was frustrated. Everyone could tell."

Corydon Central went back on top to start the second period, but Jellison got hot and buried a pair of three-balls and two singles, as the Lady Pack went on a 17-2 run to lead 26-13. Savannah Eschbacher checked in with a pair of deuces to pull Corydon Central back to within single digits, and Crawford County took a 26-17 lead to the locker room at halftime.

The Lady Panthers cut their deficit to six in the third quarter with a 6-3 burst, with Eschbacher scoring inside to pull Corydon Central to within six, 29-23. Jellison later countered with a three, and Kayla Toney added a deuce inside for Crawford County's biggest lead of the night, 42-29. Heather Uhl finished the period with a pair of freebies, and Crawford County's lead was 11 points with eight minutes to go.

"One of the problems we were having was to get the ball reversed," Cox said. "We were trying to reverse that by attacking the middle when it was a 1-3-1. It was just our floor spacing. Our floor spacing wasn't very good on it, and earlier we had fine spacing."

Corydon Central tightened its defense in the fourth quarter while at the same time launching a 13-2 offensive assault to grab a 44-43 edge. Cox said for a brief time his team panicked during the run.

"It did rattle us, and we knew it was coming," he said. "I really thought our kids would be able to handle it, but we didn't. We just kind of had that trickle-down effect where one kid lost their composure and then it trickled down to another kid and, before I know it, I've got five heads hanging."

"They started trapping, and it's hard for Carolyn (Pellman) because she's short," Jellison said. "When people trap her, that's when me and Ashley had to take over."

Crawford County pushed its lead back to five, but Marie Rothrock drilled a three to cut the Lady Pack's lead to 50-48 with less than two minutes to go.

From there, the action went to the free-throw line as Crawford County connected on 7 of 7 and added a deuce to go on for the 61-57 win.

"We hit some free throws, and that's been a problem for us," Cox said. "We lost some games this year we probably would have won had we hit free throws like we did tonight. Tonight, we hit some free throws and came out on the winning end."

Corydon Central’s Rachel Deaton drives the baseline against Crawford County’s Chelsea Jellison in the first half.
Jellison, who had struggled with her shooting through the middle part of the season and had begun to lose confidence in her shot, found her groove to pour in 28 points to lead the Crawford County scoring. Forbes had 14, and Toney followed with 10. Crawford County (13-7, 3-3 Patoka Lake Athletic Conference) was 18 of 42 from the field (43 percent) and 19 of 28 from the stripe and had 14 turnovers.

"It's just been a while since my shot has been good," Jellison said. "It's been off lately. It's been a real frustrating season. It just hit me last night, and I started feeling it after the first two. I was just kind of looking for it after we got up."

A few days before, the Crawford County junior passed the 1,000-point mark on a road trip to Orleans, a game that to the chagrin of the Lady Pack went into the loss column.

"I haven't really been thinking about that kind of stuff," Jellison said. "It just hasn't been like it usually has. I don't know what's wrong. I'm glad it came back, because I was really happy after that. It made me feel a lot better."

"Good shooters, you tell them to keep shooting the ball, and I think the mental part of it got to her a little bit," Cox said. "The shots weren't dropping, but she's back in her groove now, and we're glad to see it."

Heather Uhl led Corydon Central (6-13) with 15 points, and Kayla Uhl and Rothrock finished with 11 each. Eschbacher added 10 points for the Lady Panthers, who were 18 of 52 (35 percent) from the field and had 21 turnovers.

"Mike's kids did a good job," Cox said. "Mike Uhl is one of the premier coaches around. I think he does a nice job. His kids are very fundamentally sound. They came out here to protect their turf, and they did that."

"I think Mike and I both will benefit from this game," Cox said. "I'm sure he would liked to have won it, but it was a good game for both teams to get us ready for sectional. It was a nice atmosphere tonight, a good crowd. We both need a game like this to get us ready for sectional."

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