UNION CITY – It was a battle between backyard rivals Ansonia at Mississinawa Valley on Saturday with both in search of that elusive first win of the season. When the time had elapsed it was the visiting Lady Tigers going home with the coveted win, 74-49.
Ansonia jumped out on top early with relentless pressure and attacking the basket to race out to a 21-11 lead with sophomore Kierra Reichert leading the charge scoring all 11 of her game points in the opening frame and senior Trinity Henderson had 7 points.
“I was really happy with our defense. It’s been missing in some of the games, but the kids came out ready to play got some easy turnovers off the press for scores and that helped get us going,” Ansonia coach Jim Bolin said.
Freshman Mattie Hiestand led the ‘Hawks scoring 6 of their 11 points in the frame.
The Tigers doubled up Mississinawa in the second quarter 16-8 to take a 37-19 halftime lead.
Ansonia sophomore Rylie Marker had 5 points matching Henderson in the second quarter.
“We struggled defensively and came out over energetic, it kind of got in our heads a little bit,” Mississinawa Valley coach Michael Paige said.
“We just have to figure out what lineup works well and get some chemistry going,” Paige said.
The third quarter would be the most competitive of the day with both teams putting up 14 points which helped show Paige his team can compete.
Six different girls scored for MV in the third period and the defense slowed Ansonia down as well.
“We have to start playing with more pressure. When we did good things happened and we need to be able to do that more in the game,” Paige stated.
Mississinawa couldn’t keep pace in the final stanza as the Tigers were flying up the floor scoring 23 points led by sophomore Mariah Troutwine with 8 points all on lay-ups as Ansonia went on to get its first win of the year 74-49.
“The first ‘W’ is always good. It was a long time coming, but we’re fairly young and learning as we go,” Bolin commented.
“We all shot the ball well today with five players in double figures. I expected to see that earlier in the season and hope now they can use this as a springboard going forward,” Bolin added.
“I’m really happy for Trinity, she played a nice game today. She’s a senior and has good leadership, shoots the ball well and came up big,” Bolin concluded.
Henderson led Ansonia with 17 points, while Marker had 15, Stover 12, Reichert 11 and Troutwine 10.
MV freshman Mattie Hiestand led all scorers on 18 points and senior Olivia Murphy added 10 for the Lady ‘Hawks.
“We did score today and that was good to see,” Paige said.
He also couldn’t help but see all the missed opportunities.
“Free throws really hurt us today going just 17-for-39. We have to get better there, and just 13-for-67 from the field, so we have to make our layups and free throws. It’s those little things that add up and then it would be a much closer game,” Paige concluded.
Ansonia improves to 1-5 and 1-3 in the Cross County Conference and will host Hagerstown, Ind., on Tuesday. Mississinawa falls to 0-8 and 0-4 in the conference it doesn’t get easier with Bethel on Thursday.
Score by quarters
Ansonia: Edward 0-2-0/0 – 4, Henderson 2-1-9-11 – 17, Runkel 0-2-1/2 – 5, Reichert 0-3-5/7 – 11, Stover 0-3-3/5 – 12, Marker 2-4-1/5 – 15, Troutwine 0-5-0/0 – 10. Totals 7-17-19/30 – 74
Mississinawa Valley: Johnson 1-0-0/1 – 3, Hunt 0-1-1/3 – 3, Johns 0-0-4/6 – 4, Murphy 1-3-1/4 – 10, Lavy 0-1-2/8 – 4, Stachler 0-1-1/2 – 3; Hiestand 0-6-6/10 – 18, Reichert 0-0-1/4 – 1. Totals 2-13-17/39 – 49
Ansonia 7 (Stover 3, Henderson 2, Marker 2)
Mississinawa Valley 2 (Johnson 1, Murphy 1)