|Lady Green garners 5th state berth|
|Monday, March 11, 2013 2:10 PM|
The Ottoville girls basketball team enjoys its Division IV Regional title Saturday night at the Elida Fieldhouse. (Delphos Herald/Tom Morris)
By Charlie Warnimont
ELIDA — Ottoville jumped out to an early lead Saturday night against Arcadia.
Normally that would be enough to get the Big Green rolling towards their next win, but with a spot in the Division IV state semifinals on the line, Ottoville found the Lady Redskins would not fade into the background.
Arcadia battled the Big Green tough for three quarters before the Redskins ran out of gas in falling to the top-ranked Big Green 52-37 before a packed house at the Elida Fieldhouse.
The win sends the Big Green (27-0) to the Division IV state semifinals 3 p.m. Friday against Fort Loramie (25-3) at the Schottenstein Center on The Ohio State University campus. This will be Ottoville’s fifth trip to state but their first since the 2007 season. The Redskins end their season at 23-4.
The win not only meant Ottoville would be advancing to state but the win was the 400th career win for Big Green coach Dave Kleman.
That was something he downplayed.
“I’ve really tried to play that down because it’s not about how many wins I get, it’s about the girls playing,” Kleman said. “The fans were really nice to me. The girls knew it but it was like having a no-hitter. Nobody was saying anything until after the fact. I really appreciated that and the girls work so hard.”
Ottoville came out firing Saturday night as they opened up an 18-10 lead after the first quarter. The Big Green drained four 3-pointers in the opening quarter as they were 4-of-6 from behind the arc: Nicole Vorst hit a pair, while Taylor Mangas had one and Rachel Turnwald hit one to end the first-quarter scoring.
Arcadia actually scored first as Regina Fox hit a three before Ottoville went on an 8-0 run to take a lead they wouldn’t lose. The Big Green hit 7-of-10 first-quarter shots, while Arcadia was 4-of-7 but turned the ball over five times.
“We’ve battled height all year and that’s a testament to the heart of these kids,” Arcadia coach Randy Baker said. “It seemed every team on our schedule had at least two people 6-foot or taller. Ottoville just had a little more outside than some of those teams had and they hurt us early. We maybe helped too much in the post at times and they kicked it out, got looks and drained 3-pointers early in the game.”
After hitting four 3-pointers in the opening quarter, the Big Green didn’t hit one the rest of the game as Arcadia stepped up its defensive pressure on the perimeter. Meanwhile, the Redskins didn’t go away as the Big Green struggled in the second quarter for a second straight game as starters Vorst and Abby Siefker both picked up their second foul in the quarter and had to sit on the bench.
With two starters on the bench, Arcadia used a 6-2 run to start the second quarter, coming within 20-17 on a Miranda Palmer 3-pointer. Molly Glick scored four points early in the quarter before Annie Lindeman answered for Ottoville. Rachel Beining later added a 3-point play before Arcadia hit 3-of-4 free throws down the stretch to come within 25-20 at the half. The Redskins had a chance to pull closer as they had the final two shots of the half but couldn’t get a 3-pointer or a 2-point attempt to fall.
Ottoville pushed its lead out to nine to start the second half as Siefker and Turnwald hit baskets before Siefker was forced back to the bench with her third foul. After Courtney Cramer scored for Arcadia, Turnwald added two free throws, putting the Big Green up 31-22. Baskets by Cramer and Palmer had the Big Green lead down to five before Beining ended the brief run with a 3-point play. The two teams traded baskets down the stretch as Lindeman hit a short-range jumper and Beining drove to the basket for two points that had the Big Green up nine points going to the fourth quarter.
Lindeman and Haley Landwehr were key for the Big Green in the game as they stepped in for Siefker and Vorst, respectively, and did their jobs.
“We tell them it’s about the ‘little boy and the dike’ (story),” Kleman said. “Put your finger in the hole and plug it for a while and we get some big people in or the starters back in. And they did a good job. They don’t have to have 30 points or five or six steals; all you have to do is maintain and do what we do.”
With the game still in doubt, the Big Green used a 5-0 run midway through the fourth quarter that pushed their lead to 14 points.
The two teams traded baskets to open the final quarter, then with both offenses unable to do anything, the Big Green put the game away at the free-throw line as they had the only basket in the final 5:47 of the game. Turnwald started the run hitting 3-of-4 free throws before Vorst added a pair of free throws before Palmer answered back for the Redskins with a three.
Two more free throws from Turnwald and a Beining basket pushed the Ottoville lead to 15 with 2:15 left before both teams managed just three points a side the rest of the game.
“They were doing a good job of stripping us. I told the girls we needed to take care of the ball and get it inside the second half,” Kleman said. “We did a better job the second half getting the ball to our big girls. They are real quick and that made it tough. We had to work some clock to get it inside.”
Turnwald led the Big Green with 16 points as she hit 9-of-10 free throws. Beining added 11 points, while Siefker had nine points, eight rebounds and three assists. Vorst added nine points, while Mangas had two steals and two blocks.
“Rachel Beining had a big game. She really has been in the shadow of Abby all these years but Rachel works her heinie off just as much as anyone else,” Kleman said. “And Rachel Turnwald had a heck of a game for us. And she hit some big free throws at the end of the game.”
Palmer led the Redskins with 19 points but only seven of them in the second half. Cramer and Glick both had six points for Arcadia.
* * *
Arcadia 13-42 7-10 37: Miranda Palmer 6-4-19; Courtney Cramer 3-0-6; Molly Glick 2-2-6; Regina Fox 1-1-4; Rebecca Kirian 1-0-2; Abbie Dauterman 0-0-0; Lizzie Coward 0-0-0; Maddie Mock 0-0-0; Julia Pina 0-0-0; Hannah Ball 0-0-0.
Ottoville 17-29 14-18 52: Rachel Turnwald 3-9-16; Rachel Beining 5-1-11; Abby Siefker 4-1-9; Nicole Vorst 2-3-9; Annie Lindeman 2-0-4; Taylor Mangas 1-0-3; Haley Landwehr 0-0-0; Monica Sarka 0-0-0; Kendra Eickholt 0-0-0; Courtney Von Sossan 0-0-0.
Score by Quarters:
Arcadia 10 10 9 8 - 37
Ottoville 18 7 13 14 - 52
Three-point goals: Arcadia 4-20 (Palmer 3, Fox), Ottoville 4-8 (Vorst 2, Turnwald, Mangas).
Rebounds: Arcadia 22 (Cramer 5, Dauterman 5), Ottoville 21 (Siefker 8).
Turnovers: Arcadia 13, Ottoville 13.