Like the roar of the 35 mile per hour winds outside, Brian Ziegler’s Archbold Blue Streaks blew through Pettisville on the road Monday night, scoring the first 18 points of the game to register a 61-44 non-league win over the Blackbirds.
“I think we continue to get better,” said coach Ziegler. “Our first half was about as well as we have played in a while, I thought we executed offensively very well and I thought our defense was a huge factor in that we didn’t let them run much in the way of offense early in the game.”
“We just didn’t show up in the first quarter at all,” explained a frustrated Blackbird coach Jason Waldvogel. “We didn’t play or really do anything in the first five minutes. We didn’t defend, we didn’t run our offense, we just weren’t there.”
Alyssa Ziegler began scoring with a triple from the top of the key 17 seconds into the game.
Five Blackbird turnovers and 8 of 10 Archbold shooting from the floor by five different Streaks in the next 4:40 ran the lead to 18-0.
Kierstyn Repp scored on a spin move into the key, Ziegler added another triple from the same spot as the first, Emie Peterson drove for a hoop, then Andi Peterson wrapped three baskets around a Cassi Wyse bucket off an offensive rebound to cap the Blue Streak explosion.
Anya Kauffman’s three-pointer at the 1:52 mark of the first broke the Blackbird drought, but Archbold took a 24-8 lead into the second quarter and expanded it to as much as 24. That is when Andi Peterson scored inside with 3:53 left in the second to make it 35-11 as eight different Streaks scored in the half.
“The fun thing about this team is that they are so unselfish,” stated Ziegler. “They don’t care who scores and they look for the open man.”
Archbold still led 49-30 after three, and were up 52-32 after Emie Peterson’s three-point play with 7:31 to go in the contest before the Birds made a run.
Kauffman hit the third of her three-point goals on the night and Morgan Leppelmeier scored seven straight Pettisville points to slice the 20 point lead in half at 52-42 with 2:47 still left.
However, Emie Peterson scored on a run-out off the pressbreaker, and after Alexa Leppelmeier’s pair of free throws again shaved the lead to 10, Archbold went 7 for 9 from the foul line down the stretch to put the game away.
“We have good shooters,” said Ziegler. “And we got the right people to the line that we needed and they stepped up confidently and knocked them down and good teams will do that. When you don’t that’s when teams will cut into your lead instead of extending it and tonight we were fortunate enough to extend.”
The win was Archbold’s 10th in 11 games this season, while Pettisville fell to 6-4.
Repp led an extremely balanced Archbold attack with 11 while Andi Peterson and Ziegler each had 10.
Morgan Leppelmeier had game scoring honors with 17. Alexa Leppelmeier had 10.
Joe Blystone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org