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Woodmen win on road

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It wasn’t the type of performance Debbie Guckenberger was looking for from her team, but Greenwood improved to 13-3 with Tuesday night’s 58-48 road win against Southport.

“We didn’t play real well, but a win is a win,” said Guckenberger after the Woodmen recorded their third consecutive victory. “Southport is a team that wants to push the ball on offense. They like to score a lot of points. Defensively, they’re very scrappy.”

In the closing moments of Tuesday’s game, an aggressive Cardinals’ defense forced back-to-back turnovers by the Woodmen and quickly trimmed a 10-point deficit to three.

Greenwood freshman Holly Hoopingarner hit key free throws down the stretch and the Woodmen slowly regained control, especially after two of Southport’s starters, sisters Bria and Shayla Wright, fouled out of the game.

“Holly can really break people down off the dribble, but she doesn’t always take the shot when she has it,” Guckenberger said. “In the second quarter and then again in the fourth, she started to give us more of that.”

Hoopingarner finished with 15 points, but it was seniors Deauna Evans and Kelsie Ratliff who provided consistency throughout for Greenwood on both ends of the court.

Evans scored a game-high 23 points while connecting on nine of her 18 shots. She also added 11 rebounds. Ratliff scored eight of her 13 points from the free throw line, but led all rebounders with 15 boards.

“Deauna had several key putbacks for us,” Guckenberger said. “She also did a good job of getting to the line.”

Evans registered seven offensive rebounds and made four of her six free throw attempts. Overall, the Woodmen connected on 20 of their 25 shots from the free throw line.

Senior Grace Clark led Southport with 15 points and 12 rebounds, while fellow senior JaBreena Gardner added 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The 7-7 Cardinals, who have now lost three consecutive games, connected on 20 of 62 field goal attempts, including just 1 of 21 from 3-point range.

The Woodmen are back in action Friday when they host Decatur Central at 6 p.m.

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