Wauseon got off to a sizzling 9-0 start and despite Delta’s best efforts, they were able to hold off the Panthers for a 45-38 win in Northwest Ohio Athletic League girls basketball Thursday night in Wauseon.
“A team like Delta you know they’re gonna make shots. You know they’re gonna make plays; you know they’re gonna pressure you. And for our girls to have enough composure, and keep their heads on them, and handle the pressure as well as we did, I was very pleased. We had a lot of girls step up tonight,” said Wauseon coach Dan Seiler of the win.
With the Indians’ victory, the two teams finish tied for second in the league with 5-2 records.
In the first quarter, Wauseon opened up their aforementioned nine-point cushion behind six points from Marisa Seiler, 1 of 2 at the foul line by Autumn Pelok, and a Chelsie Raabe hoop off Pelok’s assist. However, the Panthers did fire back with seven straight from Brooklyn Green — including a three-point basket off a steal — that trimmed the margin to two near the halfway mark.
That difference remained until 3-pointers from Seiler and Pelok gave the Indians a 17-9 advantage with 1:09 left. Reagan Rouleau’s short jumper for Delta with under a minute to go would be the last points of the frame.
After a pair of Khloe Weber free throws for the Panthers to start the second period, Hayley Meyer of Wauseon scored inside at the other end and later a Seiler 3-pointer put them back up nine at the 6:38 mark.
The Panthers then used a 6-1 run on a pair of Braelyn Wymer triples with Pelok’s split at the line in between, pulling within four at 23-19 with 4:41 until halftime.
Wauseon’s Kadence Carroll fired back with a three of her own just over two minutes later, then she fed one inside to Meyer with 1:33 remaining. The Indians led 28-20 at half following 1 of 2 at the line by Green.
“We dug ourselves a hole in the first quarter and weren’t ever really able to dig ourselves out,” explained Delta coach Ryan Ripke. “We would go on a mini 4-0 or 6-0 run to get back into striking distance, but then one of their girls would hit a big bucket or we would give up an offensive rebound. We had some good looks in the first half that just didn’t fall. At the same time, Wauseon was hitting similar shots.”
Coach Seiler had his girls “man up” the versatile Panthers, not giving more attention to any one player over another. Their strategy seemed to work as Delta had trouble with consistency all game long.
“I don’t know with a team like Delta if you can just focus on one,” he said. “They are just so good offensively. Any point and time they can hit the threes. And any one of them that he (Ripke) puts on the floor is very good shooters. I can’t express how much respect I have for their ability to shoot the ball. So we just told the girls, ‘look, just play straight up. We’re gonna match up with them man, we’re gonna press just a little bit.’ For the most part that’s what we did.”
The two squads were even (9-9) in the third with the Indians taking an eight point lead, 37-29, into the fourth.
Meyer scored six of her 12 points in the stanza for the Indians. Pelok’s three made up the difference.
“She had a few really nice looks there in that first half (that missed),” coach Seiler said of Meyer. “She could have very easily got mad and quit, but she didn’t. She kept working and she had a really nice second half. That’s what this game’s about. You’re not always gonna do the right things. You’re not always gonna make them buckets. But how well do you adapt and how well do you adjust to your mistakes is pretty huge. I think we done that well tonight.”
The first bucket of the fourth did not come until 2:44 in, when Weber laid one in off a Panther steal to get them within 37-31.
However, Raabe drained a jumper, Brooklyn Wymer split from the line for the Panthers, then Pelok’s drive and score and Raabe’s open bucket extended the Wauseon lead at 43-32 with only 3:15 remaining. It ended up being too much for the Panthers to overcome.
Seiler paced the Indians with 13 points, Meyer chipped in her 12 and Pelok 11. Green scored 11 points and Rouleau 10 for Delta (13-6).
Wauseon was in action Saturday where they emerged victorious at Edgerton, 55-30. They close the regular season at 15-5.
Reach Max Householder at 419-335-2010.