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Lady Dragons beat Piketon in D3 district semifinals

Fairland Lady Dragons’ Kelsie Warnock (13) defends against Piketon Lady Red Streaks' Avery Reuter (with ball) during Monday’s Division III district semifinal game at Waverly. Fairland pulled away in the third quarter to a 51-30 win. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Fairland Lady Dragons’ Kelsie Warnock (13) defends against Piketon Lady Red Streaks’ Avery Reuter (with ball) during Monday’s Division III district semifinal game at Waverly. Fairland pulled away in the third quarter to a 51-30 win. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

WAVERLY — It seemed like a case of good news, bad news, but in the case of wining during tournament play, it’s all good news.
The Fairland Lady Dragons weren’t at their best overall but it was enough to beat the Piketon Lady Red Streaks 51-30 in the Division III district semifinals on Monday.
Fairland forced Piketon into 29 turnovers but shot a dismal 12-of-46 from the field and led by just seven points after three quarters.
The Lady Dragons finally got rolling in the fourth quarter and cruised to the win.
“The positive thing is we just won a district game by 20-plus points and we didn’t play nearly our best offensive game. If we can get it clicking on Saturday or throughout the rest of the tournament, we’ve got a good chance.
Fairland (22-2) will now play Lynchburg-Clay at noon on Saturday in the district finals at the Waverly Downtown Arena.
Lynchburg-Clay routed Oak Hill 75-52 in Monday’s second game. Fairland trailed Lynchburg 20-19 at the half last year but lost 48-33 in the district finals.
“This atmosphere when you first play in it it’s very loud. So hopefully we’ll be more relaxed on Saturday and be ready to go,” said Buchanan.
“We played in that (district finals) last year and we played a real good first half but couldn’t finish the job the second half. Hopefully this time we’ll come a little bit more prepared and ready to get a championship.”
Emily Chapman scored 15 points and had three steals and three assists for Fairland. Taylar Wilson added nine points and three assists, Alesha Simpson had nine rebounds and Allie Marshall grabbed seven rebounds.
Kara Blanton had nine points and 11 rebounds for Piketon (17-7).
The game was tied 9-9 after the first quarter as Chapman scored all of Fairland’s points. Piketon had its only lead at 7-6 when Ally Crothers followed up a missed shot at the 1:31 mark.
“We were real sluggish the first quarter,” said Buchanan.
After forcing 10 turnovers in the first quarter, Fairland caused 10 more in the second stanza.
Fairland went on a 10-0 run to start the quarter and led 19-9 with 3:58 on the clock.
Piketon got a 3-pointer from Grace Lightle and a foul shot by Blanton to trail 19-13. Morgan Fridley’s free throw with 32 seconds left in the half gave Fairland a 20-13 lead.
Wilson got a layup to begin the second half but Lightle hit a 15-footer and Blanton had a put-back as Piketon got within 22-17 with six minutes on the clock.
Fairland’s Jackie Wagner and Piketon’s Summer Travis traded layups and it was 26-21, but Chapman hit a 3-pointer at the 1:50 mark and Marshall’s foul shot pushed the lead to 30-21.
Blanton’s layup got the Lady Redstreaks within 30-23 at the end of the quarter.
Fairland then began to attack the basket from the middle of the lane and went on a 14-2 run to opened up a 43-25 lead with 3:55 to play.
Kaylee Courtright hit a 3-pointr for Piketon only to have Wagner make back-to-back layups for a 48-28 lead with 2:05 left.
Both teams then began to empty their benches.
“We played very hard. We caused around 30 turnovers. I know the rebounding was very close and that’s really big against them because that’s kind of their deal to out-rebound you,” said Fairland coach Jon Buchanan.
“I told (the girls) I feel like we have more talent, now as long as our effort is at a high level we’ll be fine. And obviously from an offensive standpoint we didn’t have it. We didn’t play very well. From a defensive standpoint, we locked down and they had 13 at halftime and maybe 23 after three and then (they scored) seven (in the fourth quarter). You feel like in the tournament you can hold somebody under 40, you’re going to win.”
Piketon    9    4    10    7    =    30
Fairland    9    11    10    21    =    51
PIKETON (17-7): Avery Reuter 1 0 0-0 2, Kara Blanton 4 0 1-2 9, Grace Lightle 2 1 1-2 8, Kaylee Courtright 0 1 0-0 3, Summer Travis 1 0 0-0 2, Ally Crothers 2 0 0-0 4, brianna Odel 0 0 0-0 0, Cami Alexander 0 0 0-0 0, Riley Williams 1 0 0-0 2, Ally Ritchie 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 13-43 2-4 30. 3-point goals: 2-11. Rebounds: 11-O, 24-D = 35 (Blanton 11, Reuter 6). Team/deadball rebounds: 6. Assists: 4. Steals: 2. Turnovers: 29. Fouls: 4. Fouled out: None.
FAIRLAND (22-2): Allie Marshall 2 0 1-2 5, Taylar Wilson 4 0 1-2 9, Emily Chapman 4 2 1-1 15, Kelsie Warnock 1 0 0-0 2, Alesha Simpson 3 0 0-0 6, Jackie Wagner 3 0 0-0 6, Morgan Fridley 0 0 1-2 1, Issy McKinney 2 0 0-0 4, Karli Fuller 0 0 0-0 0, Harley Lyons 0 1 0-0 3, Bailey Roland 0 0 0-0 0, Jenna Stone 0 0 0-0 0, Britney Thompson 0 0 0-0 0, Sydney Bane 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 22-56 4-7 51. 3-point goals: 3-14. Rebounds: 12-O, 20-D – 32 (Simpson 9, Marshall 7). Team/deadball rebounds: 5. Assists: 10 (Chapman 3, Wilson 3). Steals: 16 (Warnock 3, Chapman 3). Turnovers: 13. Fouls: 8. Fouled out: None.
SECOND GAME
Oak Hill    4    18    13    17    =    52
Lynchburg    25    20    18    12    =    75
OAK HILL: Carlie Dempsy 0 0 0-0 0, Bailey Ward 0 0 0-0 0, Caitlyn Brisker 3 0 2-2 8, Jalea Caldwell 3 0 4-6 10, Bethany Blanton 2 4 1-2 17, Peyton Miller 0 0 0-0 0, Brianna Blanton 2 1 6-8 13, Rileigh Swingle 2 0 0-0 4. Totals: 12 5 13-18 52. Fouls: 9. Fouled out: None.
LYNCHBURG-CLAY: Abby Blankenship 0 2 0-0 6, Zoe Fittro 0 2 2-2 8, Emily Pinkerton 0 0 -0 0, Lexi Waits 3 0 0-0 6, Peyton Scott 9 0 4-6 22, Hannah Binkley 9 0 1-1 19, McKayla Binkley 7 0 0-0 14. Totals: 28 4 7-9 75. Fouls: 16. Fouled out: Blankenship.