Versailles girls basketball earn complete team win over Arcanum


By Drew Terhall

ARCANUM — After a close first quarter, the Versailles girls basketball team started to get turnover after turnover as they went on to win 70-30 at Arcanum on Jan. 13.

Versailles head coach Tracy White said prior to the game, they have stressed playing for each other and make up for each others mistakes. In this one, the players fed off each other and played as one.

“Our girls played a solid four quarters. We played 32 minutes, it didn’t matter who was on the floor. We just worked really well together and got things clicking defensively and offensively,” White said.

For the Lady Trojans, it was another game where they got a team’s best. Arcanum head coach Abbey Moore said after they played well in the first quarter, the turnovers started to take them out of the game.

“Today, we just didn’t really give the battle that I know we can. I don’t know if it’s our focus or where our heads were at at the beginning of the game,” Moore said. “We made some plays in the first quarter and had some strong defensive possessions. But then the turnover bug hit us and it was too big of a hole to get out of.”

The guards for Versailles sparked the offense as they were able to cause turnover after turnover. Senior Jenna Dirksen, junior Sarah Stammen and sophomore Katey Litten were all lockdown defenders getting their hands on the ball.

White said it was the guards best played game as they weren’t physical, but put themselves in the best position to get deflections and get steals. White also said Litten had her best all-around game as she led the team in scoring with her scoring out in transition and in the half-court.

Versailles led 37-19 at halftime as Litten had 11 points in the second quarter. White said she told her team they have to find ways to pull together and stop an opponents run or when the momentum swings away from them. Their defense took away any momentum Arcanum was building in the first quarter.

“Early in the game, when they got a couple shots or we had a couple rotations where we might have missed it, we didn’t skip a beat. The girls were talking constantly. Our communication was probably at an all time high compared to our other games,” White said.

Arcanum couldn’t get over the turnovers. They were held to 11 points in the second half and made two field goals. They were 13 for 18 from the free throw line in the second half.

Even as Versailles had the size advantage down low with senior Allison Schwartz and junior Taylor Wagner, Arcanum sophomore Caroline Long did a good job competing with them and not allowing them to take over.

The Lady Trojans were out of sorts on offense against the tough Versailles defense. They got some scoring opportunities, but couldn’t make the most of them.

Junior Alexis Gibbons led Arcanum with 12 points and was 8 for 8 from the free throw line. Long and junior Brooke Anderson both had seven points.

Moore said the team will have to refocus and prepare for their challenges ahead. She hoped to see her team make a statement against a team they could see in the tournament. But, it will be another learning opportunity for them as they prepare for a tournament run.

“This one hurts because it’s a big sectional matchup that we were hoping to come out and make a little better of a statement. We got to learn from it. If we see them in the tournament, we got to give a better effort. That’s for sure,” Moore said.

For Versailles, Litten led with 19 points. Dirksen had 11 points while Wagner and Schwartz each had 10 points. White said with the starters out in the fourth quarter, the reserves came in and made the most of that opportunity.

The Lady Tigers were coming off a loss at Parkway in an up and down season so far. White said it is in this team to play to this level consistently, it’s just part of the process towards getting to that consistency.

“It happens all the time. You grow and you just have to work until you get to know your teammates. We’re invested and our girls are taking the time and we’re breaking apart a lot of things in practice. Our goal is to get better everyday,” White said. “If we can peak at the right time when it comes to tournament time, then that’s where we’ll be.”

Versailles is 7-5 on the season with a 3-2 MAC record. They will host Bellefontaine on Jan. 15 at 7:30 p.m. as part of their first annual Prosperity Promotions Tiger Classic. Arcanum is 9-5 on the season with a 5-2 WOAC record. They will host Bradford on Jan. 18 at 7:15 p.m.

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

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