The Delaware Hayes girls basketball team bridged halftime with a 17-4 run to take control on its way to a 53-36 victory over Whitehall-Yearling in non-league action Wednesday night in Delaware.
“There’s really good team chemistry,” senior Madison Eldridge said. “Everyone is working really hard. We weren’t selfish (tonight) … everyone was working really well with each other.”
Freshman Alyssa Griner scored seven of her 13 points in the second quarter to help the Pacers take control and fellow freshman Alexis Amabile tied Griner with 13 points to lead the team.
“A big part of what (Whitehall does) is they try to steal outlet passes … they try to hassle you in the backcourt,” Pacers coach Lou Tiberi said. “If we could get clear of the traffic, we could get some easy shots … and Alyssa really got up and down the floor and Alexis had some really nice finishes.”
Jordan Lantz scored twice underneath during an 8-2 run to help Delaware close the half with a 29-15 lead. Her first basket came on a put-back and Eldridge fed her on the second. Lantz finished with 12 points.
Eldridge opened the second half with a three-pointer off a Piper Adkins feed – the first of nine straight by the Pacers (7-6) to open the lead to 21. Eldridge scored six points off a pair of threes.
“I’ve definitely been in a slump – so making those two threes actually really helped a lot,” Eldridge said. “It gave me back a lot of confidence that I had definitely lost.”
“From a fundamental standpoint – (Eldridge) is probably our most efficient rebounder,” Tiberi said. “She boxes out … she knows how to use her body. Plus, she’s mature … she’s a senior.”
Delaware led by as many as 24 points in the fourth quarter before Whitehall closed the game 7-0.
Kiara Bagley led the Rams (1-13) with 14 points, including eight in the fourth quarter.
“We had never seen them with Bagley,” Tiberi said. “She had a big game coming into this game – I think she scored 21 against Groveport. Piper did a great job of shutting her down for most of the game.”
Delaware returns to OCC-Cardinal action next, hosting Hilliard Darby Friday night at 7:30 p.m.
Olentangy Liberty 64, Dublin Scioto 49
Four different players scored in double figures as the Patriots notched a non-league win over the visiting Irish Wednesday night in Powell.
“It was a good win for us … great balance,” Liberty coach Sam Krafty said. “The kids are really playing hard. Every night is a struggle, but they truly are responding with a lot of effort and energy. They are a fun group of kids to coach.”
Kelly Levering led the way with 13 points, all coming in the second half. Gina Santangelo and Emma Humenay, who combined for six of the team’s 10 three-pointers, closed with 12 points apiece while Kennedy Kashmiry added 11 points in the win.
Scioto’s Natalie Hutras led all scorers with 21 points.
Liberty outscored Dublin Scioto in all four quarters. The Patriots led 10-9 after one and won the second 18-13, the third 23-17 and the fourth 13-10 to smooth out the scoring summary.
Liberty returns to action Friday against host Olentangy Orange. Tip is set for 7:30 p.m.
Gazette Sports Editor Ben Stroup contributed to this report.