BASKETBALL: Redskins routed

SHAWNEE TOWNSHIP — Shawnee coach Jeff Heistan couldn’t remember ever seeing anything like it.

And Wapakoneta coach Rusty Allen didn’t ever want to see it again.

Heistan’s Indians blasted out to a 29-2 first-quarter lead and steamrolled their way to an 82-46 win over Allen’s Redskins in a Western Buckeye League varsity girls basketball game Thursday at Shawnee High School.

“That was one of the better first-half performances I’ve ever seen in our gym,” said Heistan, who has been coaching at Shawnee for more than 25 years.

Allen used his entire allotment of three full timeouts for the game in the first 6:19 of the first quarter in a desperate bid to staunch the bleeding.

The Indians full-court pressure defense forced 14 first-quarter turnovers, including 13 in a string of 14 straight possessions.  Wapak finished with 28 turnovers for the game.

“This was a tough one,” Allen said.  “I told the girls, I take full responsibility for this.  I didn’t do a very good job of preparing us for their pressure.  I definitely will not make that mistake again.  I guarantee you we will be ready for Elida on Wednesday.”

The loss dropped the Redskins to 10-10 for the regular season and 5-4 in WBL play.

Wapak will now shift it’s focus to the Elida Bulldogs, who it will face in a Division II sectional semifinal at 8 p.m. Wednesday at Spencerville High School.

“I told them, I’ve seen a lot of strange things happen in my time in the tournament,” Allen said.  “We still feel like we’re a team that could play quite a few games.  

“We’ve just got to have a little bit of confidence in ourselves and in each other.”

Shawnee is 16-4 overall and 8-1 in league play. It got so bad that when the buzzer sounded to end the first quarter, Heistan started to walk toward the Shawnee lockerroom, thinking it was halftime.

“I’d never been in a situation like that, where at the end of one quarter you’re up 29-2,” he said.  “We didn’t really want to change [what we were doing] because we’re preparing to go play [in the tournament].  We were working on stuff and I wanted to focus on that.”

Shawnee senior Liz Aller led all scorers with 23 points, including seven 3-pointers.  She had 20 on six threes in the first half.

The Indians had four players in double figures.  Joining Aller were senior Chrystena Smith (15), junior Britt Lauck (15) and senior Shantay Glenn (14).

Senior Courtney Knippen led Wapak with 18 points.  Junior Annie Henderson scored 13.  And freshman Lea Stoner added eight points off the bench.

Junior Nicole Brown (5), senior Mallory McDevitt (1) and senior Tasha Helmstetter (1) rounded out the Redskins’ scoring.

With the score tied at 2-all early in the first, the Indians went on a 27-0 run to close out the quarter.

Wapak continued to battle and played Shawnee even (21-21) in the third quarter and outscored the Indians 13-10 in the fourth.

In the junior varsity game, Wapak outscored the Indians 9-2 in the fourth quarter to pull away for a 40-29 win.

Freshman Carly Buzzard scored 20 points to pace the Redskins.  Classmate Megan Watt added nine and sophomore Erin Schnell chipped in with seven.