UNION CITY – Even though his team lost 79-30 to St. Henry on Saturday afternoon, Mississinawa Valley girls basketball coach Vance Venesky continued to see improvement from the Lady Hawks.
“The experience factor is the thing that’s going to make us better,” Venesky said. “Games like this, as long as I don’t see them giving up, that’s a good thing with these girls. The 15 girls are kind of dedicated to getting better, and they get better every day at practice. We just have to show it more in the game. And they are showing flashes of being better.”
One area Venesky saw improvement was dealing with defensive pressure. St. Henry forced numerous turnovers in the early stages of Saturday’s game, leading to easy points for the visitors and a 24-8 lead through one quarter of play.
Sidnie Hunt scored all of the Hawks’ points in the opening period.
As the game went on Mississinawa Valley started handling the defensive pressure better and also got more girls involved in the offense. Bailey Johnson and Leah Scholl joined Hunt in the scoring column in the second quarter, which ended with a 43-13 St. Henry lead.
St. Henry further extended its lead to 62-17 in the third quarter with Hunt once again scoring all of the Hawks’ points.
The fourth quarter was the best of the day for Mississinawa, who scored 13 points in the period with contributions from Hunt, Taylor Stachler, Olivia Murphy and Arianna Caixba.
Stachler, making her first varsity start, is one of seven freshmen on MV’s roster.
“She’s been doing really well in the JV, and it was time for her to get a start up here,” Venesky said. “You’re going to be seeing more of that my JV girls and trying to find the right combination.”
Hunt led Mississinawa Valley with a game-high 16 points in Saturday’s game. Also for the Hawks, Murphy scored 5 points, Caixba scored 4, Johnson scored 3, Scholl scored 1, and Stachler scored 1.
Alyssa Buschur led St. Henry with 15 points, Allison Siefring scored 12, Addy Vaughn scored 12, Nora Vaughn scored 12, Nikki Keller scored 11, Cora Stammen scored 10, Carleigh Deitsch scored 4, and Danielle Imel scored 3.
“It can be frustrating on the one side of brain and on the other side it’s a good learning experience for my girls,” Venesky said of trying to defend St. Henry’s balanced scoring attack.
Mississinawa Valley dropped to 0-5 with Saturday’s loss while St. Henry improved to 3-2. The Lady Hawks will return to action on Thursday at Ansonia.
“We’re going to be better soon, and I’m hoping that day comes very soon,” Venesky said.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.