Pilgrims close with loss to Goshen

PLYMOUTH — After losing a pair of players to injuries at St. Joe, a rough second half Tuesday translated into a slow start in Plymouth’s regular season-closer Thursday.
Lauren Tanner and Brittany Himes were sidelined with an ankle injury and a concussion, respectively, and the Lady Pilgrims started out 3 of 17 from the field in the first half — including a 1-of-9 clip in the first quarter — to fall behind by 10 at the half. Plymouth finished at a 10-of-19, 53 percent rate from the floor to outscore Goshen 27-24 after the break, but it was too little, too late as the Pilgrims closed out their regular season with a 44-37 Northern Lakes Conference loss on Senior Night at The Rock.
“The second half we played with a lot of heart, and I thought our effort for the second night in a row was really good,” said Plymouth head coach Dave Cox. “We got a lot of good effort out of everybody that played… What we had there in the second half is we had dug ourselves a hole. We shot the ball pretty well, but when you’re down by 10 to a good team, you’re probably going to have to just make absolutely every shot.”
Plymouth was able to cut Goshen’s lead down to as few as three points with 5:02 remaining in the game as the Pilgrims opened the final frame 4-1 on a Hunter Stevens putback and an Amber Redinger steal for a baseline layup off a Haley Harrell assist.
Plymouth remained as close as four points at 32-28 with 3:54 on the clock as Stevens converted the first of two free throws, but the Redskins went 11 of 15 from the free throw line in the final period to hold off their hosts and clinch fifth place in the final NLC standings ahead of Plymouth.
The Pilgrims were led by a pair of freshmen on senior night as forward Stevens put up a team-best 13 points with three steals, three rebounds and two blocked shots, and point guard Harrell tallied 10 points with an assist and a steal in the loss.
“We just can’t say enough for her,” said Cox of Harrell. “We have to lean on her so heavy. We need her to shoot the ball, she’s got to bring it up, she’s got to make decisions. She had a couple turnovers, but we can live with that. The other part of Haley’s game… is she’s a heck of a defensive player. For a little body, she really uses that body well.”
Redinger recorded six points with a game-high 10 rebounds and two blocks, while fellow junior Carly Baker grabbed four rebounds with an assist and a steal, and she knocked down consecutive 3-pointers during a 13-5 run in the third quarter that cut Goshen’s lead to 27-23 with 44 seconds remaining in the quarter.
Goshen was led by 14 points from Liana Yoder, who pilfered five steals as the Pilgrims turned the ball over 24 times in the loss. Aimee Swihart finished with 12 points for the Redskins.
It was Senior Night at The Rock and the Pilgrims honored senior players Victoria Dewar — who pulled down four rebounds with two assists in 9:03 of floor time Thursday — and Himes, who was unfortunately sidelined with a concussion sustained Tuesday but is expected to be OK for action in Plymouth’s sectional opener next Friday.
“She’s a program player. She’s never been about herself,” said Cox of Dewar. “She worked all summer. She had an ACL last season and sat the whole season. She came back this year and made the team and just worked really hard. Hasn’t gotten major minutes this season, but practices hard every night.”
“Brittany got a concussion at the St. Joe game and she will sit for about a week,” added the Pilgrims boss. “It’s not the way she wanted to go out, but it’s one of those things. She played a really good game at St. Joe.”
Plymouth closed out the regular season at 6-14 and finished in sixth place in the NLC with a 2-5 league mark behind Goshen’s 4-3 record. The Pilgrims drew the bye at Class 3A Sectional 19 and will wait to play the winner of Tuesday’s tourney opener between John Glenn and St. Joe Friday at New Prairie. Tip-off is scheduled for 6 p.m. EDT.
“St. Joe is the favorite, then CGA. I think it’s fairly even after that,” said Cox. “You never know, you go up and play, and you see what happens. We’ve got to take care of the ball and shoot the ball a lot better than we have been.”
At Plymouth
Score by quarters
Goshen: 10 20 29 44
Plymouth: 4 10 23 37
GOSHEN (44): Deja Felder 1 3-4 6, Christina Gipson 0 0-0 0, Liana Yoder 5 4-4 14, Yadira Cabrales 1 0-0 3, Diamond Kelly 0 0-0 0, Aimee Swihart 3 6-9 12, Yesenia Montanez 0 0-0 0, Hailey Warrick 3 3-4 9; Totals: 13 16-21 44.
PLYMOUTH (37): Marissa German 0 0-0 0, Carly Baker 2 0-0 6, Meagan Fisher 0 0-0 0, Haley Harrell 4 1-2 10, Savannah Mae 0 0-0 0, Amber Redinger 2 2-5 6, Victoria Dewar 0 0-0 0, Hunter Stevens 4 5-6 13, Allie Wright 0 0-0 0, Kaydon Fosler 1 0-0 2; Totals: 13 8-13 37.
3-pointers: Goshen 2 (Felder, Cabrales), Plymouth 3 (Baker 2, Harrell); Turnovers: Goshen 18, Plymouth 24; Rebounds: Goshen 24 (Yoder 7), Plymouth 26 (Redinger 10); Steals: Goshen 10 (Yoder 5), Plymouth 7 (Stevens 3); Assists: Goshen 7 (Swihart 4), Plymouth 6 (Dewar 2); Fouls (fouled out): Goshen 13 (none), Plymouth 18 (Wright).
Records: Plymouth 6-14 (2-5 NLC), Goshen 13-7 (4-3 NLC)
JV score: Plymouth 32 (Fosler 11, Dylan Holliday 9), Goshen 25 (Kayci Troyer 11)