Wapakoneta sophomore Riley Culver (35) fights for position on a boxout attempt Thursday in a Western Buckeye League varsity girls basketball game. (Staff photo/Brad Frank)
A strong start in the fourth period by the Wapakoneta Redskins allowed them to pull away Thursday for a victory over the Kenton Wildcats.
Leading by nine, 42-33, entering the final period, the Redskins quickly pushed their lead to 15 in less than 2 minutes and to 20 points another 2 minutes later.
The result was a 62-43 win in a Western Buckeye League varsity girls basketball contest in the Wapakoneta High School gymnasium.
Although the Redskins led virtually the entire game, they had to work in the second half to gain control.
After a 22-9 first-period lead, Wapak saw Kenton’s Brooke Bostelman grab 13 points by the end of the half, as the Wildcats reduced their deficit to six, 30-24, at halftime, outscoring Wapak 15-8 in the period.
The Redskins’ response the second half was to faceguard Bostelma, trying to deny her touches as much as possible, using Morgan Miller, Megan Fisher and Faith Hensley for the assignment.
“Those three did a nice job, especially Morgan Miller. She’s kind of our defensive specialist anyway,” Allen said. “We had good help side defense, too, so not only did those three individuals do a nice job of faceguarding her, the other four did well with team defense.”
Although Bostelman tallied another 13 points in the second half, Wapak coach Rusty Allen believes faceguarding Bostelman took her out of the flow of Kenton’s offense.
“We watched a little film on her,” Allen said. “She scored against 30 against Defiance, so we knew she was capable of scoring points. We went into tonight saying we’re going to try to slow her down.
“She got 26 points but 12 were from the foul line, so she had to work for them.
“We really slowed her down. It may not look like we slowed her down in terms of the box score, but she wasn’t in the flow of the game.”
The Redskins increased their lead to after three periods, 42-33, and doubled up Kenton, 20-10, in the fourth.
Sara Warner notched 20 points to lead Wapak. Carly Buzzard added 16 points, and Megan Watt notched 11, including seven in the first quarter with Warner sitting due to foul trouble.
“Sara had 20, and Buzzard logged a lot of minutes tonight. Those two did a good job,” Allen said. “Hats off to Megan Watt. She kind of carried us when Sara got in foul trouble.”
Wapak reached 60-plus points on the scoreboard Thursday, now doing so in all five of its games this season.
Although the Redskins put up 60 in a loss Tuesday to Allen East, Allen was displeased with his team’s execution that night.
The coach evaluated Thursday’s offensive performance, with just one day off between games.
“We were much better. We slowed down a bit,” Allen said. “Our execution offensively was better. We had more patience and took care of the ball better.”
Allen noted the progress of sophomore post Riley Culver after Thursday’s game.
She is starting to see increased minutes after missing the season opener with an injury.
“Riley had some nice minutes for us tonight,” Allen said Thursday. “We’re trying to get her back into the flow of things, trying to get her confidence up. When people miss, even two weeks, that’s a big deal. It takes a lot to get back into the swing of things. You’ve got to be in shape. She’s starting to get back into game shape.
“If we can get her going, we’ve got some good things to look forward to. Scheduling-wise, it will work out for us.”
The Redskins won the junior varsity game Thursday, 46-31.
Blasia Moyler scored 20 points for Wapak.
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