GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — Christmas is indeed the season of giving.
Unfortunately for the Lady Defenders, they made too many giveaways on Thursday.
Hindered heavily by 37 turnovers, the host Ohio Valley Christian School girls basketball team fell in lopsided fashion to the Cross Lanes Christian School Warriors — by a count of 63-22.
The Warriors scored the game’s opening 13 points — and outscored the Lady Defenders 15-5 in both the first and third quarters.
The young Lady Defenders trailed 37-19 after the third period, and were outdone by a hefty 26-3 margin in the final canto for the 63-22 final score.
That was, in fact, Cross Lanes Christian’s largest lead of the entire night.
The Warriors were actually on the scoreboard before the game even officially started — thanks to a scorebook clerical error that resulted in a technical foul.
The Lady Warriors’ Abbey Jeffrey made the two technical-foul free throws, jump-starting the 13-0 start over the opening seven minutes of the contest.
With exactly a minute remaining in the opening quarter, a Katie Bradley reverse layup finally got the Defenders on the board, as she then buried a three-pointer with 25 seconds to play.
The Defenders did make a comeback bid, as Emily Childers chalked up 4-of-6 free throws in the frame — along with two Rachel Sargent field goals and a Bradley charity toss.
In fact, Childers’ final two foul shots in the quarter trimmed the OVCS deficit to 20-14 — with two-and-a-half minutes remaining before halftime.
However, Jessica Kendrick canned a baseline jumper with 45 seconds left in the half — and OVCS didn’t score again until 55 seconds had elapsed in the third.
Cori Hutchison hit that field goal to make it 24-16, as OVCS’s only other points in the period came exactly three minutes later on a Childers three.
The Defenders didn’t get any closer, though, and didn’t score again until a Childers old-fashioned three-point play with 5:39 remaining.
Those were the final OVCS points, eclipsing a season-low which was previously set at Calvary Christian last Friday (31-23 on Dec. 2).
The loss left the Lady Defenders at a winless 0-4, while the Warriors raised their record to a perfect 4-0.
Bradley led OVCS with 10 rebounds, as Sargent — honored before the game for scoring her 1,000th career point on Monday — secured two blocks.
Myra Cuffee, on 11 total field goals including four treys, easily led CLCS and all scorers with 27 points.
Jeffrey, on five total field goals including three trifectas, chipped in 16.
Both Cuffee and Jeffery sank a fourth-quarter free throw apiece.
Kendrick and Rachel Plants — on four baskets apiece — posted eight points, while Emily McCloud and Lakin Brown bagged one bucket each.
Paul Boggs can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106