PITSBURG – Thirteen Versailles girls scored Thursday night as the Lady Tigers began the Ohio High School Athletic Association tournament with an 86-16 win against Triad.
Versailles dominated from the opening tip and after scoring 20 seconds into the sectional tournament contest led the rest of the game on its way to a 70-point victory.
“Everybody played well,” said Versailles girls basketball coach Jacki Stonebraker, who substituted liberally and got all of her players into Thursday’s game. “They played well together, didn’t matter what matchups I had out there.”
Danielle Winner gave Versailles the early lead with the Tigers’ first two baskets. Camille Watren and Kami McEldowney added early baskets as well to put Versailles up 11-0.
After going scoreless for the first three-and-a-half minutes Triad finally broke its drought with a field goal. But Versailles continued to overwhelm the Cardinals with Clair Schmitmeyer, Lindsey Winner and Kami Ording joining the scoring column to put the Tigers up 32-4 at the end of the opening quarter.
Versailles used its press defense, which the Cardinals struggled to handle, early in the game but backed off by the end of the first quarter.
“We wanted to get out on them and set the tone of the game,” Stonebraker said. “And we always press. We always press at the beginning of the game so I felt like we can’t change anything now.”
With Versailles backing off defensively the Tigers’ scoring dropped off dramatically in the second quarter, but they still added to their lead with scoring from Emily Langenkamp, Kami McEldowney, Danielle Winner, Brynna Blakeley and Elizabeth Ording and went into halftime up 47-8.
While Versailles missed several bunny shots, the Tigers finished most of their possessions with points thanks to a strong rebounding effort.
“I think we had 20 offensive rebounds in the first half so that’s a great stat to have,” Stonebraker said.
Triad drained a pair of 3-pointers in the third quarter for its most productive period of the game. But Versailles continued pulling away with scoring from Danielle Winner, Elizabeth Ording, Kami McEldowney, Blakeley and Schmitmeyer and went into the fourth quarter up 73-14.
Triad scored the first basket of the fourth quarter but then finished the final 7:24 of the game without any more points. Versailles, meanwhile, finished strong with Watren, Hailey McEldowney, Kelsey Custenborder, Bailey Huffman and Caitlin McEldowney putting up points to finish off the 86-16 victory.
Kami McEldowney finished the night with a game-high 24 points for Versailles. Also for the Tigers, Danielle Winner scored 15 points, Schmitmeyer scored 12, Elizabeth Ording scored 6, Watren scored 5, Blakeley scored 4, Huffman scored 4, Langenkamp scored 4, Hailey McEldowney scored 3, Kami Ording scored 3, Custenborder scored 2, Caitlin McEldowney scored 2, and Lindsey Winner scored 2.
Tori Thomas led Triad with 7 points. Also for the Cardinals, Shelby Sheets scored 3 points, Kristin Bailey scored 2, Makenzie Cauley scored 2, and Alea Ferguson scored 2.
Versailles now advances to the second round of the sectional tournament. The Tigers will play Northridge at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Franklin Monroe.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.