Playing in a tight game all night long, Wauseon’s defense was able to get a couple stops in key situations as the girls basketball team won for the first time this season, dispatching Edgerton 46-41 in non-league action Monday night.
“I thought the kids’ effort was there tonight,” Wauseon coach Ashley Oyer said after the win. “We had a rough one on Friday (a 79-29 loss to Archbold), so it was important for us to be able to bounce back.”
Edgerton led just once in the final stanza when Ally Cape knocked down a crazy shot near the basket as a part of a three-point play. The free throw finished the play, which put the Bulldogs ahead 39-38 with 4:04 left.
Wauseon was patient with the basketball and had an answer when Alexis Suarez drove to the hoop and scored to put the Indians back in front 40-39. The score stayed the same until the 45 second mark when Rylee Campbell found Sam Aeschliman off an inbound play for a score. Aeschliman was also fouled on the play, but couldn’t get the three-point play.
“We’ve really emphasized patience on the offensive end,” stated Oyer. “I felt like last year we rushed things and chucked things up at times. I thought they did a nice job executing and being patient and working the ball.”
After a timeout, Edgerton came up with an answer. Cape came up with a score with 33.5 seconds to go to again cut the lead to one at 42-41. When the Bulldogs couldn’t get a steal, they sent Campbell to the line, who hit the front end of a one-and-one.
Still a one possession game at 43-41, the Bulldogs were working the clock for a good shot, but lost the ball on a double dribble. They sent Aeschliman to the line when Wauseon got the ball in, and she made both of her shots to extend the lead to 45-41 with 12.9 seconds left.
Still within range, Edgerton still had a couple more miscues in them. One was a five-second call on an inbound when play resumed, which led to Sydney Zirkle going to the free throw line. Her free toss made the score 46-41 with 11.3 seconds left. Zirkle added a steal when Edgerton was pushing the ball upcourt to end any chance the Bulldogs had.
“We did a better job as the game went on of talking through screeners and cutters,” Oyer said of her team’s defense. “We did a better job of talking and switching, whatever it is that we were doing.”
Wauseon finished 17 of 35 from the floor in the game, including a 12 of 18 first half. It led to an eight point lead, but the Bulldogs finished the half on a 6-0 run to close the score to 29-27 by halftime.
The Indians finished with 16 turnovers to 17 for Edgerton. They held the Bulldogs to 38 percent shooting. Edgerton also had a 29-20 edge in rebounds.
Campbell led the offense with 14 points. Zirkle added 12 points.
“She’s a go-getter,” Oyer said about one of two seniors in Campbell. “She’ll run through a brick wall for you. She’s done a nice job of leading the way.”
Wauseon (1-3) plays at Fairview next Monday.
Reach Randy Roberts at firstname.lastname@example.org