After five straight losses, the Oak Hill girls were searching for a win in the worst way.

A nip-and-tuck first three quarters left the notion in limbo, but the Red Devils finally asserted themselves in the final period and grabbed a 55-40 victory over the Valley Greyhounds Monday.

“This was a very good win for us,” said Oak Hill coach Pat Bay. “We needed a confidence booster.”

Owning a slight 32-31 lead near the end of the third frame, the Devils scored the final three points of that eight-minute stretch — on a free throw by Quartney Settle and a putback by Lakesha Givens — to go ahead 35-31.

In the last stanza, the visitors maintained their momentum by netting 15 of the next 17 points to move into a 50-33 spread with 3:22 to play. They did so by running the floor and establishing a solid interior offensive game against a taller Valley squad.

Settle and Dannielle Matheny provided the spark during the run, with Settle scoring on a deuce in the paint and a pair of free throws, while Matheny turned a steal into a two-pointer on her end and followed that with a pull-up jumper. Givens supplied another putback goal, Hailey Horn’s three-pointer from the left corner pushed the margin to 15, and Leslie Hughes capped the surge with a runner in the lane for the 17-point lead.

Valley’s Crystal Jordan converted a three-point play to stop the bleeding temporarily and make the score 50-36 with 3:02 left, but the Greyhounds could get no closer than 12 points the rest of the way.

“We do this every game,” said Valley coach Marshall Murray. “Our mistakes kill us.

“We just lose focus. And our girls have a bad habit of watching while the other team runs the floor. We’re young, but there should be no excuses after the ninth game.”

Matheny enjoyed a solid all-around game for Oak Hill, collecting team-high totals of 16 points and 12 rebounds. Settle followed closely with 13 points and six boards. Horn scored nine points — all on trifectas — and Hughes pulled down six caroms.

“We got real good inside games from Dannielle Matheny and Quartney Settle,” said Bay. “The first half we were getting beat down the floor. We were worried about covering the perimeter and fronting them defensively, because they had the height advantage ... and rebounding has been our downfall the entire year.

“The girls really pulled together. I was really proud of them tonight.”

Lamenting his team’s poor work on the glass, Murray said, “We think because we’re big we don’t have to block out.” He also expressed his dissatisfaction with turnovers and missed layups, as well as the fact that his players didn’t get the ball consistently to post player LaShea Edmonds. “We’ve got a 6-foot-2 center and don’t lob her the ball.”

Oak Hill had a 10-7 lead late in the first quarter, but Valley got buckets from Kayla Stewart and Danielle Grubb to go up 11-10 after eight minutes.

A see-saw second period saw Valley with a 19-16 lead on a Keeley Abbott putback with 4:41 to play before Oak Hill fought back to go ahead 23-21 on a Settle freebie with 48.9 seconds left. To continue the early trend, the ‘Hounds got a jumper from Bobbi Dyer, who followed that by stealing the ball and scoring another two for Valley, putting the hosts up 25-23 at the break.

Dyer finished with 12 to lead Valley. Grubb tossed in nine.

Oak Hill (3-7) travels to Webster County tonight.

Valley (2-7) hosts Charleston Catholic at 7 p.m. Thursday.

— E-mail:skeenan@register-herald

Oak Hill 55, Valley 40

Oak Hill (3-7)

Quartney Settle 4 5-9 13, Hailey Horn 3 0-0 9, Kristen White 3 0-0 6, Dannielle Matheny 6 3-6 16, Leslie Hughes 3 1-3 7, Cassie Molchanoff 0 0-0 0, Shakiyla Cosby 0 0-0 0, Lakesha Givens 2 0-0 4, Savannah Robertson 0 0-3 0. Totals: 21 9-21 55.

Valley (2-7)

Bobbi Dyer 6 0-0 12, Harley Abbott 0 0-0 0, LaShea Edmonds 2 0-0 4, Danielle Grubb 4 1-2 9, Kayla Stewart 3 0-0 6, Kasi Riddle 0 0-0 0, Keeley Abbott 3 0-0 6, Crystal Jordan 1 1-1 3, Nikki Estep 0 0-0 0, Brittany Lively 0 0-0 0. Totals: 19 2-3 40.

OH 10 13 12 20 — 55

V 11 14 6 9 — 40

Three-point goals: OH: 4 (Horn 3, Matheny); V: none; Fouled out: none.

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