Titans pounce on Panthers

The Notre Dame Titans inched closer Monday to a perfect conference record with a 64-44 victory over the Clay Panthers.

Notre Dame (15-2, 11-0) had four players score in double figures; led by Hagen Schafer who scored a game-high 17 points. Lexi Smith scored 14, Katie Detwiller added 13 and Ali Smith, who knocked down two of the Titans’ 3-pointers on the night, finished with 10 points.

“It’s nice. I think I said at the beginning of the year that we have five kids on the court capable of hitting double figures every night; most nights we have three or four reaching double figures,” Titans head coach JD McKenzie said.

“Hagen and Ali shoot well from outside. Raegan also shoots it well from outside for us. Katie and Lexi are pretty dominate forces inside. Molly (Hoover) setups up the offense and gets people where they need to be. I think that’s what makes us effective, you can’t come in with a game plan of stopping our outside but we can go inside, and if you take away our inside, we can shoot outside. That balance when we’re clicking on all cylinders is pretty fun to watch.”

After leaving Clay High School with a 20-point victory, Notre Dame has three conference games left before reaching perfection. While the fans might feel the growing expectations, the Titans are focusing on the most important game of the season — the next game.

“We’re to the point now of one game at a time,” McKenzie said. “We control our destiny if we take care of our business. Nobody can take it away from us, all we’ve got to do is keep winning. We’ll think about the undefeated mark at 13-0 — if that happens.

“The girls and the coaching staff has done a good job of just concentrating on that next game. It doesn’t matter who it is, conference or nonconference, the next game is the most important one. All the games we play matter, whether it’s for seeding in the tournament or trying to win the conference, every game we’ve played in this year has mattered.”

Up next for the Titans might be the most important contest of the season as the Symmes Valley Vikings, ranked second in the SOC I, travels to Notre Dame on Thursday.

“Right now they are setting second in the conference with two loses,” McKenzie said. “So, what makes that game even bigger is if we can win it, we at least clinch a share of the conference. It’s a big game for us in that aspect but Symmes Valley brings a veteran, talented team that plays hard. They’ve won a bunch of games this year. They’re physical and it’s always a battle.”

Box Score

Notre Dame 17 10 26 11 — 64

Clay 6 18 9 11 — 44

Individual Statistics

Notre Dame — A. Smith 4-0-10, Detwiller 6-1-13, Schaefer 7-2-17, Kayser 5-0-10, L. Smith 5-4-14.

Clay — Brown 2-3-9, Osborn 4-0-9, DeLotell 4-0-11, Warnock 3-1-7, Arns 3-0-6.

Three-point field goals — Notre Dame 3 (A. Smith 2, Schaefer); Clay 6 (Brown 2, Osborn, DeLotell 3).

Records — Notre Dame 15-2 (11-0); Clay N/A.

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The Notre Dame Titans beat the Clay Panthers 64-44 Monday night at Clay High School.
http://portsmouth-dailytimes.aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2016/01/web1_2008-01-04-04.39.03-1.jpgThe Notre Dame Titans beat the Clay Panthers 64-44 Monday night at Clay High School.
Notre Dame in pursuit of perfection

By Chris Slone

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Reach Chris Slone at 740-353-3101, ext 1930, or on Twitter @crslone