Jets ground Buckeye
RAYLAND – Leading by a point early in the fourth quarter, Union Local girls basketball head coach Drew Greenwood called a timeout because he wasn’t satisfied with his team’s play.
His Lady Jets got the hint as they outscored homestanding Buckeye local 20-8 en route to a convincing 47-34 victory.
“We run that high-low, but we need a lot of work on it in the post,” Greenwood said. “They got the reps tonight, but we just changed up a couple of things, and the girls responded.”
The player who responded the most was Cori Medley, who was coming off a 30-point effort Tuesday against Bellaire. The 5-foot-8 junior netted 13 of her game-high 18 points after Greenwood’s strategy session, which placed her in the high post.
“Cori’s a ballplayer,” Greenwood noted. “She got off to a rocky start early in the game, but good players find ways to get things done, and she found a way.”
Following Greenwood’s timeout with 7:04 left to play and Union Local holding a slim, 27-26, edge, senior Kayla Doty scored and Medley’s conventional three-point play bumped the count to 32-26.
Buckeye Local’s Alexis Valuska scored to stop the bleeding, but two baskets by Medley and a free throw by Doty made it 37-28 before Valuska would score again.
“Once we got to halftime, we talked about effort,” Buckeye Local head coach Willy Luther revealed. “Moving our feet defensively and limiting them to one shot. We did a great job of doing both of those things in the third quarter, along with taking care of the basketball, and it showed on the scoreboard.
“When we took care of the ball, we were able to score points. All night, time and time again, we weren’t able to take care of it. When we weren’t able to take care of it, Union Local was able to take advantage of it. They did a nice job of turning our mistakes into points.”
The Panthers were able to slice a 25-16 deficit to 27-26 as Union Local (12-4) went ice-cold from the floor in the third panel, going 1-for-15.
Doty backed Medley’s point total with 17, which included a 9-of-12 performance from the charity stripe, where the winners were 17-for-25.
Buckeye Local didn’t toe the line one time.
Valuska, Kayla Fillipovich and Lauren Swiger all scored eight points for Buckeye Local (3-12). Fillipovich also pulled down a dozen rebounds as the Panthers led 35-31 off the glass. Doty grabbed seven for Union Local.
The Panthers turned the ball over 28 times, twice as many as the Jets.