SPRINGFIELD – The No. 4 seed Versailles Lady Tigers dominated from the opening tip until the final buzzer in dismantling the No. 2 seed Williamsburg Lady Wildcats 53-12 to win an OHSAA D-III district championship and join the Sweet Sixteen.
“The girls were focused,” said Versailles coach Jacki Stonebraker. “I am really proud of how the girls came out and showed their fight.”
The Lady Tigers 6’2” Lindsey Winner gave Versailles a 2-0 lead followed by back-to-back Caitlin McEldowney 3-pointers and a free throw each from Hannah Barga and Elizabeth Ording to push the team’s lead to 10-0 at 4:55 in the first.
The Lady Tigers added two Ording buckets and a basket each from Brooke Stonebraker and McEldowney to take an 18-4 lead after one period of play.
“You could tell they were going to really sag down on our post players,” Stonebraker noted. “They wanted to defend Lindsey (Winner). They had about two are three girls on her. I thought they boxed out really well but Caitlin’s shot from the outside just kind of sealed it for us. We were able to work inside and outside today.”
Versailles shut the Lady Wildcats out in Period No. 2 while getting a Kelsey Custenborder triple and McEldowney drilling her third three of the game. Savannah Toner and Ording rounded out first half scoring with a 2-point goal each sending the teams to the break with the Lady Tigers holding a 28-4 lead.
Winner and Ording led Versailles in third quarter scoring with 4-points each, Barga drilled a 3-pointer and Stonebraker and McEldowney both added a basket with McEldowney’s coming with 0:26 showing to give Versailles a 45-10 advantage sending the game to a running clock with the 35-point spread.
“Very good domination defensively,” said Stonebraker. “They got past us a little bit into our second team defense and I thought the girls did a nice job of staying strong inside, grabbing down rebounds and not giving too many second chance points.”
Williamsburg’s Jessica Chase came into the game averaging 16-points a game and Madi Ogden averaging 10-points were held to four and zero points respectively.
“We went to the locker room and I realized that 13 (Chase) didn’t have any points going into the locker room at halftime and I thought Lindsey (Winner) did a great job on 20 (Paige Fisher held scoreless). I was very proud of the girls.”
Coach Stonebraker continued to use her entire bench in fourth quarter play to add 8-points to the board while holding Williamsburg to 2-points to earn the district championship trophy and advance the Lady Tigers in tournament play.
“Liz (Ording) did a great job defensively – was our helper anytime that any one of our girls got beat on the dribble. She was the one that was going to help and not let anybody get to the rim.”
McEldowney led Versailles and all scorers with a game high 12-points.
Versailles plays Waynesville in first round regional play at Springfield, Wednesday, March 6 with a 6:15 start time.