Thomas helps Tanagers pull away from EPJ

Thomas helps Tanagers pull away from EPJ by Jim Prosser The Vermillion girls' varsity Tanagers pulled away in the last stanza to down the Elk Point-Jefferson Huskies 49-41 in basketball action Jan. 21 at Elk Point.

Vermillion had led by only two heading into the final quarter.

Jackie Thomas scored 20 points, grabbed six rebounds and made three steals.

The Tanagers jumped ahead 14-9 after the first quarter, led 28-20 at halftime, and then led 35-33 after the third quarter.

Vermillion carried the game from long range, making 8 of 19 three pointers to 2 of 16 for EPJ.

"We did some very nice things tonight," said Vermillion coach Jamie Parish. "Our girls played against a very good team and picked up a road win. We didn't look as good as we have in some of our previous games, but a lot of that can be attributed to the fine coaching job that coach Steckler has done.

"They really caused us some problems in the third quarter running a match-up zone that our kids had not seen before," coach Parish said. "It took us awhile to get adjusted and attack the proper gaps. The kids played very hard and also caused us some problems on the boards for a short time."

Vermillion improved its record to 5-5, while EPJ dropped to 6-3.

Vermillion sank 7 of 9 free throw attempts. The Tanagers made 17 of 38 from the field, while EPJ was 17 of 40 from the field. The Huskies sank 5 of 12 free throw tries.

The close win had several contributors to the cause.

"Jackie Thomas had an exceptional second half of the game," coach Parish said. "She showed some of the skills and talent that we see in practice on a daily basis, but this was the first time that she has taken over a portion of the game for us. Our coaching staff is very excited to see her play this style of basketball. Ashley Bjorkman gave us a big basket in the middle of the fourth quarter to give us a lift and put some distance between us and EPJ. The other kids did a nice job, too; as I said before we didn't play our best basketball in recent weeks, but they showed the resiliency to battle through the tough spots and held on for a victory."

Individual Stats, Vermillion: Scoring � Jackie Thomas, 20, Ashley Bjorkman, 16, Allison Stewart, 4, Kat Redlin, 4, Annie Carlson, 3, Annie Roche, 2. Rebounds � Thomas, 4, Bjorkman, 6. Assists � Bjorkman, 4. Steals � Thomas, 3.

Individual Stats, EPJ: Scoring � Dominice Harris, 12, Leslie Nebelsick, 10, Joellen Groethe, 6, Erin Hagenbank, 5, Lisa Scott, 4, Jennifer Mead, 3, Katie Weavil, 1. Rebounds � Groethe, 5, Nebelsick, 4. Assists � Amanda Begnoche, 5. Steals � Groethe, 3.

Team rebounds: Vermillion � 25, EPJ � 17. Team fouls: Vermillion � 17, EPJ � 15.

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