Pettisville led by as many as eight points in the second half Tuesday at home against Holgate in girls basketball. However, 20 points from Holgate sophomore Bailey Plott, 17 of which came in the second half, allowed the Tigers to overcome the deficit for a 42-39 victory in overtime.
“It comes down to this, they played harder than we did,” said a frustrated Pettisville coach Jason Waldvogel after the game. “They rebounded the ball, we didn’t rebound the ball. We didn’t defend. They played harder.”
The Blackbirds opened the third period with a pair of buckets from Morgan Leppelmeier and Sami Tilley, extending their lead to 19-11 at the 6:21 mark.
Holgate began to get their offense going after that, starting with a three-pointer from Plott, then 1 of 2 free throws for Madilyn Hohenberger around a jump shot from Tilley to get them within six. Hohenberger then stepped to the foul line with 1:09 left, where she knocked down a pair to make it 21-17 after three.
The Tigers stayed hot to begin the fourth as both Kirsten Hoffman and Plott pegged threes, and Hohenberger scored off a steal to put them up four, 25-21, at the 5:43 mark.
However, Pettisville senior Alexa Leppelmeier would not let her team go quietly. Shortly after Hohenberger’s basket, she buried a three, and with 4:20 left in regulation, her bucket put the Blackbirds back on top 26-25.
Morgan Leppelmeier added another three for Pettisville, Plott answered with a trey for the Tigers, and Alexa Leppelmeier’s basket kept the Blackbird lead at three. That did not last long, however, as Plott drilled another from long range and two free throws for Kacee Theisen made it 33-31 in favor of Holgate with 1:17 to go.
Alexa Leppelmeier put one in at close range with just over a minute left, a bucket that ended up being the final score of regulation.
In overtime, Plott once again kick started the Tiger offense with a triple, then Theisen went 3 of 4 from the line around 1 of 2 from Alexa Leppelmeier, giving Holgate a 39-34 lead with 1:19 to go.
Theisen’s second trip to the charity stripe resulted in Alexa Leppelmeier’s fifth foul, forcing Pettisville to play without their senior leader for the final minute. But, Waldvogel said it had no barring on the final result of the game.
“As a team, we put five players on the floor and we are satisfied with it,” said the coach. “We have to have five players on the floor that play hard all the time.”
A three from Morgan Leppelmeier got the Birds within two, Kameron Kupfersmith split a pair at the line for the Tigers, and Plott drilled a pair to make it 42-37 with just 27 seconds remaining. Brandi Schnitkey drew contact on Pettisville’s next possession where she hit both free throws.
The Birds would turn Holgate over following Schnitkey’s freebies, but they could not cash in.
Pettisville put on a defensive clinic in the first half, limiting the Tigers to only 11 points.
In the second quarter, the Tigers got 1 of 2 free throws from Hohenberger and a Plott triple, which was her only points of the first half, to get within 11-9 at the 5:41 mark.
Pettisville answered with a pair of baskets by Nichole Foor before two freebies by Theisen closed the half with the Blackbirds on top 15-11.
Pettisville shot 36 percent (15 for 42) from the floor, while Holgate shot just 28 percent (9 for 32).
Alexa Leppelmeier’s 15 points and 10 from Morgan Leppelmeier led the Blackbird offense. Plott had 20 for Holgate, 18 of which came from beyond the arc.
Pettisville (13-4, 8-1 BBC) will have revenge on their mind Thursday when they welcome Stryker (15-2, 9-0) for a league contest. A victory would put the Blackbirds in position to tie for the BBC crown.
“We’ve just got to come ready to play,” said Waldvogel of the upcoming match-up. “Hopefully, (we) play harder than we did tonight.”
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010