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GIBSON CITY -- The Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley girls basketball team lost 59-40 to Tri-Valley on Monday, Dec. 9.

Though the loss dropped the Falcons to an overall record of 2-6, as well as a 1-2 record in the Heart of Illinois Conference, head coach Keri Dornbusch says she remains optimistic.

“The girls are improving every day. They’re putting the time in. They’re working hard. They’ll keep improving. Right now, it’s a learning curve that we’re coming around to. We’ll get there. I keep telling the girls to just keep working, and it’ll fall," Dornbusch said.

"It’ll come. Things will start clicking. We’ve made improvements every day. We’ve made improvements every week, every game. We’re just going to keep with that trend, and we’ll be good come February.”

The Falcons started the game with a 7-0 run as Hannah Hathaway made a 3-pointer before Emily Clinton made a basket and Abby Spiller scored two more points via a Kennedy Fanson assist with 5:37 left in the first quarter.

After Lauren Carter made a 3-pointer with 4:12 left in the first quarter to get Tri-Valley on the board, Hathaway answered back with a trey of her own with 3:46 remaining in the quarter to extend GCMS's lead to 10-3.

Regan Danko and Addison Ritchie each made a basket to cut the Vikings' deficit to 10-7 before Rylee Tompkins scored while getting fouled with 2:44 remaining in the first quarter.

From there, Tri-Valley went on a 7-0 run as Danko scored a basket before Ella Propersi stole the ball and raced toward the other basket for a fastbreak layup with 2:15 left in the first quarter. A 3-pointer by Lily Young gave the Vikings a 14-12 lead with 1:09 remaining in the opening quarter.

After Clinton tied the game via two free throws with 55.3 seconds left in the first quarter, Young made another trey to give Tri-Valley a 17-14 with 28 seconds remaining in the quarter. Hathaway made a basket to cut GCMS's deficit to 17-16 as the first quarter came to an end.

“It was a fast game," Dornbusch said. "My girls are working hard. We took some good shots and they didn’t fall. They ran the ball really well on us.”

The Vikings started the second quarter on a 6-0 run that included a couple of fastbreak layups by Danko that each started with a steal by her. Whitney Leipold scored while being fouled with 6:15 left in the second quarter.

Ryleigh Brown made a jump shot off the glass to cut GCMS's deficit to 23-18. Tompkins and Brown each made a free throw cut cut the Falcons' deficit 23-20 with 2:59 left in the second quarter before Alexis Ferrell scored on a fastbreak layup while getting fouled by Brown 31 seconds later.

Ferrell made the free throw to complete the three-point play and extend Tri-Valley's lead to 26-20. Baskets by Ritchie and Leipold further extended the lead to 30-20.

After Skyler Funk tallied a two-point bucket to cut GCMS's deficit to 30-22, another steal and fastbreak layup by Ferrell made the halftime score 32-22.

“We had some turnovers that they converted on," Dornbusch said. "That’s going to hurt any team. Hat’s off to them. They played a great game, and our girls will keep working hard.”

Brown made a free throw 30 seconds into the third quarter before a 3-pointer by Young and a two-point basket by Carter extended Tri-Valley's lead to 39-23.

Hathaway made a 3-pointer before baskets by Leipold, Carter, Ferrell and Emily Regenold and a free throw by Ritchie extended the Vikings' advantage to 46-26.

Free throws by Clinton and Spiller and Hathaway's fourth trey of the game cut GCMS's deficit to 46-31 as the third quarter concluded.

After a basket by Brown, Young and Carter scored to make the score 50-33 before Hathaway -- who finished with a game-high 17 points -- made her fifth 3-pointer of the game to cut the Falcons' deficit to 50-36.

Regenold and Brown exchanged baskets before Ferrell and Spiller did the same to make the score 54-40. Tri-Valley concluded the game on a 5-0 run as Propersi made a free throw before Ritchie and Danko each made a two-point basket.

Hathaway was the only GCMS player to score in double figures as Brown finished with eight points while Clinton and Spiller each had five points, Tompkins had three points and Funk had two points.

For Tri-Valley, Danko and Young each scored in double figures wiht 12 and 11 points, respectively.

Tri-Valley 59, GCMS 40

TV 17 15 14 13 -- 59

GCMS 16 6 9 9 -- 40

Tri-Valley

Regan Danko 6-0-12, Makenna Barker 0-0-0, Lily Young 4-0-11, Whitney Leipold 3-0-6, Lauren Christopher 0-0-0, Grace Martin 0-0-0, Ella Propersi 1-1-3, Caitlin McCane 0-0-0, Lauren Carter 3-0-7, Alexis Ferrell 4-1-9, Emily Regenold 2-0-4, Paige Fitzgerald 0-0-0, Addison Ritchie 3-1-7. Totals 26-3-59.

GCMS (2-6, 1-2)

Kadyn Barnes 0-0-0, Hailey Ferguson 0-0-0, Kennedy Fanson 0-0-0, Hannah Hathaway 6-0-17, Rylee Tompkins 1-1-3, Skyler Funk 1-0-2, Anneliese Kerchenfaut 0-0-0, Emily Clinton 1-3-5, Abby Spiller 2-1-5, Ryleigh Brown 3-2-8, Emma Swanson 0-0-0. Totals 14-7-40.

3-pointers -- Tri-Valley 4 (Young 3, Carter). GCMS 5 (Hathaway 5).