It was a struggle but the Lady Titans prevailed in the opening game of the Lancer Classic at Southeast High School Tuesday night.

The 63-60 win over a good Oswego team is the good news. The bad news is . . .the Lady Titans get to face Frontenac, possible the best team in southeastern Kansas on Thursday night.

The two teams were closely matched but on Tuesday it was a different Columbus team. The Lady Titans worked hard on the inside, used an aggressive close-up defense and went after the ball aggressively made the difference.

“We found a way to win, that’s all that matters,” said Lady Titan coach Kenny Boeckman. “We hit our free throws in the fourth quarter for the game, 11-16 at the end.”

Columbus opened the game with a 4-0 lead and kept a lead the entire game, but it wasn’t that easy.

The Lady Titans were up by 11 at one point in the third quarter, only to see the lead melt to as low as one in the final seconds.

In the final 16 seconds of the game Oswego pulled within one at 60-61 as Kali Kitterman netted three free throws.

Brianne Wells, was quickly fouled, she stretched the Lady Titan lead to 60-62.

Audra Soper, added another free throw with four seconds left to get the win.

“Everybody that played did something positive,” said Boeckman. “Jessica Anderson had a good game, she will continue to get more playing time as she improves.”

Sophomore Jessica Anderson led the team in scoring with 14 points, eight in the fourth quarter.

It was the Lady Titan defense that drove the offense  which is quite a change for the Columbus girls.

“We were able to control the tempo,” said Boeckman. “We had a lot of points off turnovers, many of which we created with our defense. The way we finished, letting them back in the game was the only negative.”

Bailie Hatfield scored 11 for the Lady Titans with six points coming at the free-throw line. Cassie Stanley had nine points Audra Stover scored seven, Brianne Wells, Paige Fletcher and Natalie Koons each scored six points and Danielle Crain scored four points in the win.

The Lady Titans will go against Frontenac. They crushed their host Southeast 60-20.

Other games

Frontenac 60,

Southeast 20

Hannah Ketterman hit her 1,000th career point as a Raider she picked it up, and then some finishing with 24 points, as the Raiders crushed off Southeast 60-20.

Riverton 43,

Baxter Springs 34

Riverton’s Cheslyn Mitchell sparked the Rams to a 43-34 win over Baxter Springs. Mitchell led all scorers with 17 points spread out over all four quarters and Carleigh Hall helped the Rams hold off a late charge by the Lions —

Spence led Baxter Springs with 16 points in the loss.