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Lady Dragons beat Lady Devils to earn trip to the Convo

Fairland Lady Dragons’ Kayla Swiger takes a baseline jumper during Saturday’s Division III district championship game. Swiger hit a key shot in the fourth quarter as Fairland pulled away to a 49-33 win. (The Ironton Tribune / Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

By JIM WALKER

Tribune Sports Editor

 

WAVERLY — Basketball is a game of runs. Fairland had its runs and North Adams had one big run.

And when all the running was done, the Lady Dragons were running their way to the regionals.

Fairland was able to withstand a third quarter surge by North Adams and used a big run of its own in the fourth quarter to beat the Lady Green Devils 49-33 on Saturday and capture the program’s second district championship.

After a big run by North Adams cut the deficit to one point at the end of the third quarter, Fairland hit two quick shots and scored 16 unanswered points to begin the fourth quarter.

Fairland coach Jon Buchanan said the fast start tin the fourth quarter was the key.

“We knew they were going to make a run. We told them don’t panic. If we can keep our heads we’ll be OK,” said Buchanan. “That’s the run that won the game.”

Fairland (23-0) will face Oak Hill at 6:15 p.m. on Wednesday in the Division III regional semifinals at the Ohio University Convocation Center.

Fairland’s defense — especially with 6-foot-4 Terra Stapleton in the middle blocking seven shots — disrupted the North Adams’ offense almost the entire game.

The Lady Green Devils were just 10 of 72 from the field and missed their first 27 field goal attempts.

Stapleton led Fairland with 19 points, 19 rebounds and seven blocked shots. Chandler Fulks added 8 points while Jaimie Phillips and Kelsey Riley grabbed seven rebounds each.

“Terra did a great job not getting in foul trouble,” said Buchanan.

Corey Pertuset had 12 points and Emily Fite 9 points and 14 rebounds for North Adams (16-7).

Fairland scored 10 straight to begin the game and lead 13-1 at the end of the quarter.

North Adams got within 17-7 in the second quarter at the 2:02 mark but Kayla Swiger’s layup with two seconds left put the lead at 19-7.

The Lady Devils caught fire from the 3-pointer line as they made 4 of 8 attempts in the third quarter. Calee Downs and Pertuset hit back-to-back triples to end the quarter and get North Adams within 30-29.

“Chandler (Fulks) said, ‘Coach, we have to go to a man.’ I told her, ‘we know.’ Our defense with Terra in the middle by herself is okay. We had to guard the perimeter,” said Buchanan.

“We weren’t very patient with the ball. If we play better with the ball they don’t make it a one-point game.”

But Fulks buried a trifecta to start the fourth quarter, Riley hit a short baseline s hot and Stapleton hit back-to-back layups and suddenly the lead was 39-29.

North Adams didn’t scored until Laynee Davis made two foul shots with 54 seconds left to play.

“Whenever (other teams) are trying to take the lead, Chandler hits the big shot,” said Buchanan. “We were just maintaining from there on out.”

North Adams 1 6 22 4 = 33

Fairland 13 6 11 19 = 49

NORTH ADAMS (16-7): Laynee Davis 1 1 2-4 7, Corey Pertuset 2 2 2-4 12, Taylor Gast 0 0 1-3 1, Emily Fite 3 0 3-4 9, Alisan Sparks 0 0 0-0 0, Mikayla Jodrey 0 0 1-3 1, Calee Downs 0 1 0-0 3, Morgan Henderickson 0 0 0-0 0, Rylee Copas 0 0 0-0 0, Tori Todd 0 0 0-0 0, Brittany Stout 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 10-72 9-18 33. 3-point goals: 4-27. Rebounds: 30-20=50 (Fite 14, Pertuset 7, Davis 6). Team rebounds: 10. Assists: 4 (Pertuset 3). Steals: 10 (Gast 3, Pertuset 3). Turnovers: 6. Fouls: 17. Fouled out: Sparks (4th 2:03), Fite (4th 1:53).

FAIRLAND (23-0): Terra Stapleton 8 0 3-5 19, Katie Fuller 0 0 3-5 3, Jaimie Phillips 2 0 0-0 4, Chandler Fulks 1 2 0-0 8, Kelsey Riley 2 0 1-5 5, Kayla Swiger 2 0 0-0 4, Mackenzie Riley 0 0 0-0 0, Lauren Poe 1 0 3-4 5, Kerie Napier 0 0 0-0 0, Haley Woodall 0 0 1-2 1, Pieper Lewis 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 18-40 11-21 49. 3-point goals: 2-9. Rebounds: 8-39=47 (Stapleton 19, Phillips 7, K. Riley 7). Team rebounds: 2. Assists: 9 (K. Riely 3, Phillips 2). Steals: 2. Turnovers: 15. Fouls: 17. Fouled out: None.