LIMA - Spencerville gave up the first three points of their game on Tuesday night but utilized their tenacious defense against host Shawnee on their way to an 18-0 run and a 59-42 non-conference win against the Indians.

Shawnee senior forward Trinity Gearing led off the game with a basket and a free throw in the opening minute but did not score again until a jump shot with eight seconds remaining in the stanza to stop the Bearcat run just before the buzzer.

Behind a balanced effort on the defensive side, junior Raigan Staup knocked down a career high five points including a 3-pointer during the run. Emma Leis, the Bearcats second leading scorer on the season tallied 11 in the opening half and was topped by only teammate Nelaya Burden who slashed her way to a dozen first half markers that included a pair of 3-pointers as the Indians attempted to get back into the game in the second quarter.

Trailing 30-12 in the middle of the second period the Indians utilized a basket by Gearing, one of her 11 first half points to get within 35-16 at the halftime stoppage.

Unable to score from the field or behind the arc in the stanza the Indians were forced to do their damage when sent to the free throw line by the aggressive Cats defense. Tessa Stahler, Paige Maxwell, and Tessa Jordan combined to hit on five of their eight tosses in the opening two periods.

While Leis and teammate Lilyan Goecke were racing past the defense in the third period for a combined 12 points, the outside shooting of Gillian Goecke and fast break layup added by Burden pushed the Bearcats to one of their best quarters of the year as they outscored Shawnee 17-5.

Shawnee found themselves behind 52-21 on the scoreboard heading into the fourth quarter but refused to go away as they would outscore their guests 21-7 in the final eight minutes of play.

Sophomore forward Hailee Conrad cut the lead to 52-23 with a basket at 7:28 to go and promptly added four more makes from the field to finish with 10 points.

Tessa Jordan finished off a 7-0 Shawnee run in the early part of the fourth quarter with one of her two 3-pointers back to back.

Asked to put his teams night into words Spencerville coach Greg Ekis stated “I was happy tonight with our defensive intensity and how we transitioned from defense to offense and how we played at the tempo we wanted to.”

Gearing led the Indian attack with 18 points on the evening. Shawnee (5-8) will be back into Western Buckeye League play on Thursday night.

Emma Leis who just narrowly missed crossing above her career high of 22 fell a point short with 21 while teammates Burden (14), and Lilyan Goecke (11) ended the night in double figures for Spencerville (8-5) who will travel to Columbus Grove on Thursday night in a key Northwest Conference clash.

Spencerville (59)

Gillian Goecke 8, Lilyan Goecke 11, Raigan Staup 5, Nelaya Burden 14, Emma Leis 21

FT: 7/9

3PT: 6 (G. Goecke 2, Burden 2, Leis, Staup)

Shawnee (42)

Tessa Stahler 1, Paige Maxwell 3, Aaliyah Fowler 2, Hailee Conrad 10, Tessa Jordan 7, Trinity Gearing 18

FT: 9/16

3PT: 2 (Jordan 2)

Shawnee won the junior varsity game 18-8 (2 quarters).