UNION CITY – Visiting National Trail came out firing and jumped on top of Mississinawa Valley, and the Blackhawks played behind the entire night, eventually dropping a 52-45 Cross County Conference contest.
In the opening frame the Blazers were hitting from the outside while paying special attention to Hawk sharpshooter Mikayla Stump, face-guarding her and limiting her touches.
The plan worked as they built a 15-10 first quarter lead. Senior Madison Stachler stepped forward to keep Mississinawa close with seven first quarter points, including a triple.
Trail expanded its lead to 29-20 at the half.
In the third period MV cut the deficit by two as Stachler and Kylie Willis each connected from behind the arch while also getting some scoring from Kelsie Hunt and Kyra Lavy.
In the final stanza every time the Hawks took a step forward, they took two steps back and just couldn’t make up the ground needed.
The highlight early in the final stanza was a long triple by Stump, her 39th of the year to establish a new single season record, surpassing her own record of 38 last year. At just the half-way point in the season the record is sure to be a much higher watermark by year end.
Mississinawa eventually fell 52-45.
Stachler had a career night with 15 points and Kelsie Hunt added 14 for the Hawks.
“Our girls worked real hard tonight, and I saw a lot of desire in them … it was an uphill battle all night, but I was waiting to see that passion,” Mississinawa Valley girls basketball coach John Hershey said.
“It came down to rebounding. We didn’t rebound the ball well, and they (National Trail) got a boatload of them, especially on the offensive end,” Hershey said.
“Madison Stachler had her best game ever, and I was impressed and so excited for her and can’t wait to watch it on film,” Hershey said. “She played under control and had a great game.
“It was a tought night for Mikayla Stump. Give credit to National Trail, they really defended her well, and we didn’t do a very good job of setting screens for her,” Hershey said.
“But I’m really happy for her that she was able get a three to break the season record for triples and put that behind her. She worked hard and has put up a lot of shots in the gym, and it’s nice to see her rewarded for that effort,” Hershey concluded.
Mississinawa Valley fell to 2-9 on the year and 0-6 in Cross County Conference play.
The Hawks will be back in action on Thursday, traveling to Lewisburg to play Tri-County North.
Score By Quarters:
MV…10…10…11…14 – 45
NT … 15…14…09…14 – 52
Mississinawa Valley scoring:
Johnson 1, Stump 4, Willis 4, K. Hunt 14, Lavy 2, M. Stachler 15
Totals 5-11-8/16 – 45
National Trail scoring:
Patrum 2, M. Laird 17, E. Byrd 6, Werner 4, Abner 17, J. Byrd 6
Totals 5-12-13/19 – 52