Momentum can be a fickle friend.
For the first half of Friday’s Division I sectional final in Sunbury, it was firmly seated on the end of the Big Walnut girls basketball team’s bench. It switched sides in the second, though, powering visiting Dublin Jerome to a 33-30 come-from-behind win.
After trailing 22-12 at halftime, the 19th-seeded Celtics clawed back into things in a hurry, eventually taking a 25-24 lead when Amaris Lowery hit a driving layup with just under a minute left in the third quarter. The hoop accounted for the final two points of a personal 7-0 run.
With the 11th-seeded Golden Eagles up 24-18 early in the third, Lowery hit a pair of free throws, then connected on a three-pointer to slice the deficit to one before her layup at the end of the third gave her team its lead.
The game was tied 28-all for most of the fourth quarter until Lowery struck again, connecting on a triple to put Jerome on top for good.
Avery Schone cashed in on a clutch jumper to get Big Walnut back within one with a minute left, but that’s as close as the Eagles would come.
Big Walnut had a handful of looks in the final minute, but couldn’t convert. Jerome’s Jamie Cline, meanwhile, hit a pair of free throws with 25 seconds left to smooth out the scoring summary.
The Eagles were outscored 21-8 in the second half, but, as bad as things were late, they were equally as good early. Big Walnut couldn’t have started much better, really.
After Jerome scored the game’s first two points, BW broke off a 9-0 run to take control. Alyssa Tarney hit a three, Schone sank a pair of free throws, Abby Brown found Payton Carter under the hoop for an easy two and Carter hit a pair of free throws to make it a 9-2 game.
Alie Intihar stopped the bleeding with a hoop, but Brown answered with a three and Carter followed it up with a transition jumper to balloon the Eagle edge to 14-4 with 2:12 left in the first quarter.
Things got worse for Jerome before they got better as BW, which led 17-10 after the first quarter, limited it to just two free throws in the second. Brown hit a three a minute before the break to make it a 22-12 game.
It was all Jerome from there, though.
With the win, Jerome advances to Wednesday’s district semifinal against Dublin Coffman. Tip is set for 7 p.m. at a site to be determined.
Delaware Christian 51, Tree of Life 29
The Eagles were dominate early, parlaying a 19-6 first quarter into a lopsided Division IV sectional semifinal win over the visiting Trojans Friday night in Delaware.
Fifth-seeded DCS outscored 10th-seeded Tree of Life in all four quarters, adding an 8-6 second, 10-8 third and 14-9 fourth to seal the deal.
Lyssi Snouffer led the charge with 28 points, 19 rebounds and five steals while Katie Neuhart added 11 points, 10 boards and six steals. Abbi Maurer was also solid, finishing with nine points and six assists in the win.
Next up, the Eagles will take on Danville in Wednesday’s district semifinal. Tip is scheduled for 7 p.m. at a site to be determined.
Olentangy Liberty 59, Independence 26
Kelly Levering connected on a school-record eight three-pointers on her way to 30 points to lead the Patriots to a lopsided win in the second round of the Division I district tournament Friday night in Powell.
Levering, who scored 20 of her points in the second half, also finished with eight rebounds and four assists.
Caitlin Splain added eight points for 12th-seeded Liberty while Jordan Rich and Gina Santangelo had six apiece.
McKenzie White led 20th-seeded Independence with 13 points.
Next up, the Patriots will take on Canal Winchester in Wednesday’s district semifinal. Tip is set for 7 p.m. at a site to be determined.
London 56, Buckeye Valley 38
The Barons fell into an early hole and never could climb out as the host Red Raiders rolled to a Division II sectional final win Friday night.
Eighth-seeded London led 24-9 after the first quarter and 35-17 by the break.
Thirteenth-seeded BV played even with the hosts in the second half, but could’t chip into the deficit.
Chelsea Edington had three three-pointers and 11 points for the Barons, who also got 11 points from Reilly Taylor. Dani Grether was also solid, closing with eight points in the setback.
Darcy Mitchell finished with a game-high 15 points for London, which advances to next Tuesday’s district semi against Hebron Lakewood. Tip is set for 7 p.m. at a site to be determined.
Dublin Scioto 42, Olentangy 32
The Braves started well, jumping out to a 16-8 halftime lead, but the host Irish finished with a flourish to rally for a Division I sectional final win Friday night.
Scioto outscored Olentangy 21-7 in the third and 13-9 in the fourth.
Kennedie Doup had a game-high 16 points on the strength of four three-pointers for the Braves while Karleigh Rothe led the Irish with 12 points.
Watkins Memorial 45, Olentangy Berlin 30
The Warriors used a balanced attack to knock off the visiting Bears in the second round of the Division I district tournament Friday night in Pataskala.
Lauren Denison, Malania Vatter and Alexia Gartner led a group of nine different scorers with eight points apiece for Watkins Memorial.
Deanara Mbouge led Berlin with 15 points in the setback.
Reynoldsburg 62, Olentangy Orange 40
The Pioneers played from in front early, up 13-10 after one, but the host Raiders used a 17-10 second and 23-10 third to take control on the way to a Division I sectional final win Friday in Reynoldsburg.
Mya Perry finished with a game-high 16 points for Reynoldsburg while Emma Delmore had 11 to lead Orange.