Lady Blackhawks set school record for wins in season with playoff victory over Riverside


By Drew Terhall

SIDNEY — The third seeded Mississinawa Valley High School girls basketball team moved on in the Southwest Division IV sectionals as they defeated Riverside High School, 53-29, at Sidney High School on Feb. 13.

The Lady Blackhawks won without their starting point guard and leading scorer, sophomore Taylee Woodbury. Head coach Michael Paige said while they lost some leadership and chemistry with Woodbury out, they also had to find a comfortable pace for everyone to play at.

“We’re rotating different people at point guard that usually don’t play point guard for us. (We’re) just trying to figure out what we’re running and trying to figure out a different pace,” Paige said. “With her (Woodbury), we play really fast. With everyone else, we got to slow it down and try to figure it out.”

The Lady Blackhawks were up 10-0 after the first quarter. They had some success offensively while they were trying to find what would work best for the team. Sophomore Syenna Purdin had six points on two three pointers for the team in the opening quarter.

Riverside started to make their way back into the game during the second quarter. They outscored the Lady Blackhawks, 13-9, in the second quarter.

The offense wasn’t consistent enough in the first half to take over the game. They had some missed shots and some turnovers that got them out of rhythm.

The Lady Blackhawks finally got comfortable in the second half. Paige said the team found their pace during the third quarter and took off.

The defense also helped out the offense. Mississinawa Valley started to get turnovers from their full-court press and scored in transition.

Paige said they believe they can win any game if they hold their opponents to under 40 points. While it may not look organized, the defense has helped lead this team to big wins.

“We’ve been playing good defense all year. I know it looks like chaos at times, but we actually know what we’re doing. Our defense is one of our strong suits,” Paige said.

After the third quarter, the Lady Blackhawks were up 36-23. The team rolled through the fourth quarter as the defense held Riverside to six points in the final quarter.

In the second half, junior Brenna Price stepped up offensively. She had 13 second half points. Her and freshman Brooklynn Seubert were the only two players to score multiple field goals in the second half.

Price led all scorers with 17 points. Purdin finished the game with nine points.

The win by the Lady Blackhawks set a new school record for wins in a season with 20 wins. They will look to add onto that record as they take on the fourth seed in Botkins on Feb. 16 at Sidney. Game is set for an 8 p.m. tipoff.

Contact Daily Advocate sports editor Drew Terhall at [email protected]

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