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Lady Dragons rout Blue Angels to wrap up share of OVC title

Chance Short
chance.short@irontontribune.com

GALLIPOLIS — It’s time for the Fairland Lady Dragons to hoist an Ohio Valley Conference champions banner.
Again.
The Lady Dragons rolled past the Gallipolis Blue Angels 60-29 on Monday to earn a share of the OVC basketball championship along with the Coal Grove Lady Hornets.
The OVC title is the 17th for the program and it is the 7th during coach Jon Buchanan’s tenure including four in the past five seasons. Fairland and Coal Grove shared the title two seasons ago.
“To win four out of five OVC titles speaks highly of how many great players we’ve been able to coach,” said Buchanan whose team is now 16-2 overall and finishes 13-1 in the OVC.
Gallia Academy (6-7, 5-7) couldn’t spoil the night as Fairland got out to a hot start thanks to Bree Allen’s 9 points in the first quarter which included a triple. The Blue Angels were unable to get easy shot attempts and scored just 2 points through the first eight minutes.
Maddy Petro scored 6 points in the second quarter to find some points for Gallia, but their defensive struggles continued. Reece Barnitz scored 5 points off the bench and the Dragons knocked down three triples in the quarter to stretch their lead out 32-14 at the half.
Barnitz hit a 3-pointer and scored 5 more points in the third quarter for Fairland as their lead continued to grow. Tomi Hinkle found her way to the basket for the Lady Dragons and scored 4 points as well.
Fairland led 48-21 after three quarters of basketball.
Preslee Reed netted the only 3-pointer of the night for the Blue Angels. The junior guard scored 9 points in the game behind Petro’s team-high 16 points for Gallia.
Allen finished with a game high 17 points and Hinkle dropped in 13 points for the Lady Dragons as they locked up the conference with easy victory. Barnitz added 10 points for Fairland as well.
“We have such a great group of kids and coaches. These kids have worked so hard this year. Our seniors have been through a long process of being two-year jayvee players, then bench varsity players and now great contributors. I am so happy for everyone in our program,” added Buchanan.
The Dragons will head into the postseason on Saturday as a No. 4 seed in the Division III sectional tournament where they will face No. 29 Lucasville Valley (2-9).
Fairland 15 17 16 12 = 60
Gallipolis 2 12 7 8 = 29
FAIRLAND (16-2, 13-1): Alli Penix 0 0 0-0 0, Reece Barnitz 2 2 0-0 10, Katie Brumfield 0 1 0-0 3, Zoey Schmidt 0 0 0-0 0, Kylee Bruce 1 0 0-2 2, Brenna Reedy 0 1 0-0 3, Kalei Ngumire 0 0 0-0 0, Kaylee Salyer 0 0 0-0 0, Bree Allen 5 2 1-4 17, Tomi Hinkle 6 0 1-3 13, Libby Judge 1 1 0-0 5, Miaa Howard 1 0 1-2 3, Kirsten Orsbon 2 0 0-4 4, Hannah Taylor 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 18 7 3-15 60. Fouls: 16. Fouled out: none.
GALLIPOLIS (6-8, 5-7): Chanee Cremeens 0 0 0-0 0, Asia Griffin 1 0 0-0 2, Hannah Ehmen 0 0 0-0 0, Maddy Petro 6 0 4-6 16, Regan Wilcoxon 0 0 0-0 0, Preslee Reed 1 1 4-6 9, Emma Hammons 1 0 0-2 2, Mary Howell 0 0 0-0 0. Totals: 9 1 8-16 29. Fouls: 13. Fouled out: none.