HAVILAND – After giving up the game’s first seven points to Defiance, the Wayne Trace Lady Raiders answered with a 13-point run that sparked the red, white and blue to a 36-31 win over the Bulldogs Tuesday night in girls non-league basketball action at the ‘Palace.’

Defiance got a three-pointer from Elizabeth Hoffman to start the game’s scoring before back-to-back baskets by Mira Horvath put the Lady Bulldogs on top 7-0 just three minutes into the contest.

However, following a Raider timeout at the 5:01 mark, Wayne Trace settled down and the Raiders scored nine straight points to close the quarter with a 9-7 advantage.

The red, white and blue was sparked by senior Gracie Shepherd, who recorded the first seven Wayne Trace points while grabbing six rebounds in the opening period.

Freshman Lexi Moore added a pair of free throws in the first quarter to help the Lady Raiders get on top after eight minutes of action. Moore was one of three freshman that started the contest along with twin sisters Careen and Caroline Winans.

“I thought once we settled down that we started to show some bright spots,” noted Raider head coach Bethany DeJarnett. “We are very young and it showed there early on in the game.”

Buckets by Shepherd and Lexi Moore extended the Raider lead to 13-7 before an Abby Moore two-pointer gave Wayne Trace a 15-7 margin.

Following a three-pointer by Defiance’s Kendallyne Kroeckel, baskets by Ava Zartman and Harper Myers widened the red, white and blue advantage to 19-10.

“We seemed to play with a little more patience there in the second quarter,” commented the Raider head coach. “It is going to be a process and we just want to get better each day.”

Defiance closed the gap to 19-14 at the intermission following two-pointers from Hoffman and Caroline McDonald.

Horvath, who finished with a double-double by totaling 14 points and 11 rebounds, brought the Lady Bulldogs back in the third quarter with a trio of baskets that put Defiance in front 20-19.

After the two teams traded baskets, a Shepherd bucket gave Wayne Trace the lead for good with a slim 23-22 lead at the end of three periods.

A Lexi Moore bucket started the fourth quarter scoring for the Lady Raiders before a three-pointer from Caroline Winans gave Wayne Trace a 28-22 advantage.

Defiance did answer with consecutive two-pointers from Kinley Maynard and Horvath in pulling within 28-26 but the Raiders would respond.

Shepherd capped off an outstanding night on the court with a trio of baskets for Wayne Trace that pushed the Raider lead to 34-28 with 1:12 remaining.

Abby Moore and Careen Winans each hit the front ends of one-and-one situations to help the red, white and blue wrap up the 36-31 victory.

“There are areas that we have to get better at but we will definitely take the win,” DeJarnett noted. “I thought we did some good things as well so we need to build on those and improve in other ways.”

Shepherd had a double-double to lead Wayne Trace with 19 points and 13 rebounds while Lexi Moore picked up four points and 11 boards in her first varsity game.

Abby Moore, Caroline Winans and Careen Winans all had three markers for the Lady Raiders while Abby Moore, Shepherd and Careen Winans picked up four steals apiece. Caroline Winans also had two assists and three steals while Harper Myers dished out three assists. Careen Winans picked up seven rebounds as well for the Lady Raiders.

Wayne Trace’s junior varsity squad posted a 41-20 win over the Bulldogs as Ava Zartman scored a dozen points and Tianna Sinn added eight. Aubrie Miller also had six markers for the red, white and blue.

The Lady Raiders return to action on Saturday as Wayne Trace visits Delphos St. John’s to take on the Blue Jays. Game time has been adjusted for the Ohio State-Michigan fans as the Raiders and Blue Jays will tip off in a varsity only battle at 10:30 a.m. For fans attending, all tickets must be purchased online as no tickets will be available at the door.