Tigers win another district crown
NF girls headed to regional after stopping Waterloo
RAVENNA — Excellent defense, especially in the second half, carried the Newton Falls girls basketball team to another district title Saturday with a 41-27 win over Waterloo in the Division III Ravenna District title game.
The Tigers (18-7) were beaten by Champion last year in the district semifinals after capturing the district the previous season.
“It feels good, very good to get this win,” Tigers coach Mark Baker said. “We graduated a great group of seniors last year, just a great group of kids. This group of kids this year had a great part in last season, they were with them the whole way, and to pick up where we left off is very special. To get back to where we thought we belonged.”
The Tigers had a stellar defensive game, never allowing the Lady Vikings to score more than double digits in a single quarter.
“If you’re familiar with Waterloo, they’ve got two weapons,” Baker said. “They’ve got some outside shooting and they have an excellent inside game with (Becky) Adelman. You have the (Aleck) Franks and (Jordyn) Jennings girls, that are just fantastic shooters and our goal was to extend that zone out and play it so we could run them off the 3-point line but still have help and recover to be able to get to Adelman at the same time.”
Newton Falls held Waterloo (18-8) scoreless for nearly an entire quarter. Starting at the end of the second quarter, the Tigers went on a quick 4-0 run going into the half and led 21-13 at intermission.
The Tigers continued their run until 2:40 was left in the third quarter and the Vikings scored their first points of the quarter. During that time the Tigers scored 15 points, to pull away.
The Vikings offense was led by Haylee Kachner (10) and Adelman (9). Kachner was the only player for the Vikings with a double-digit point total.
The Tigers had 22 rebounds and 10 steals on the night. Leading the defensive wall for the Tigers was Izzy Kline, with six rebounds and three steals. Elizabeth Barreca and Bree Hutson each had five rebounds, with Hutson stealing the ball twice.
“We wear that on our practice jerseys every game,” Baker said. “Defense is gonna win you some games, offense is gonna put people in the stands, but rebounding wins championships.”
Kline led the Tigers in points as well, with 16 points on the night, including 9 in the first quarter as the Tigers opened a 12-7 lead. Allison Sembach finished with 10 points and Barreca added 8.
The Tigers square off in the regional semifinals Wednesday against Elyria Catholic at Cuyahoga Falls High School. A victory for the Tigers sets up a potential matchup with the Struthers district champion, South Range.
“We have to see what they (Elyria Catholic) are like on film,” Baker said. “I’m not too familiar with them or who they play. I look forward to sharing some film with them and getting ready to play.”