MAC Teams Own Sectional Opener

New Bremen’s Kelly Naylor leaps toward the basket during a Division IV girls basketball sectional semifinal on Wednesday.
Sports Editor

Division IV Girls Basketball Sectional Semifinal

Game 1: New Bremen 46, Waynesfield-Goshen 22
Game 2: New Knoxville 60, Upper Scioto Valley 26

The Midwest Athletic Conference teams owned the night.

Both games of Wednesday’s Division IV girls basketball sectional semifinal at Coldwater High School pitted a MAC team against a team from the Northwest Central Conference and the games were not close.

The New Bremen Cardinals opened the evening by extending their win streak to four games with a 46-22 victory over Waynesfield-Goshen, while New Knoxville used a combination of suffocating defense and what was the best game offensively with a 60-26 win over Upper Scioto Valley.

If there were any jitters, it was during the first 5:05 of the contest when New Bremen managed just six possessions on 2-of-7 shooting and two turnovers, but Paige Jones scored the game’s next six points — all of them off four straight turnovers to jump out to a 10-2 lead.

And despite the Tigers (7-16) pulling to within five, 14-9, with 2:48 remaining in the second quarter, the Cardinals (18-5) ended the first half with a 9-0 run with scoring from five players to take 23-9 lead at the half.

The Tigers’ culprit in the second half was turnovers with nine as the Cardinals capitalized by scoring 10 points off those miscues, 21 points for the game on 18 turnovers.

The Cardinals used that combination of their length and capitalizing on turnovers to jump out to a 12-0 advantage to open the second half, leading by as much as 35-9, with 2:10 left in the third quarter.

A Kayla Wicker 3-pointer broke the Cardinals’ run, but from the 2:48 mark of the second quarter with the score 14-9 to the 2:10 mark of the third quarter, New Bremen outscored W-G 21-0 on 8-of-11 shooting from the floor.

Overall, New Bremen outscored W-G 30-12 in the second and third quarters.

The Rams (5-18) led 6-2, 4:39 into the nightcap, but New Knoxville outscored USV 24-4 from that point to the half to lead 26-10. Erin Scott made up half of the Rangers’ 24 points with 12 of her own.

Thanks to the Rams’ 3-of-20 shooting clip from the floor and Megan Jurosic’s nine first-half rebounds, the Rangers were able to use the speed of Tasia Lauth and Tayler Doty to get out and score on transition.

Lauth finished with four points, but Doty finished with a game-high 18 points.
The Rangers’ lead ballooned to 31-10 to open the second half, until Haley Hunsicker’s bucket broke New Knoxville’s 20-2 run, dating back to the first quarter with 13 seconds left.

New Knoxville enjoyed a 15-0 advantage from the 13-second mark of the first quarter to the 13-second mark of the second quarter and extended the overall advantage in the second half.

For the full story on Wednesday's Division IV girls basketball sectional semifinal games, see Thursday's print edition of The Evening Leader.