Lady Titans topple Rebels


ND stymies SG 52-31

By Paul Boggs - pboggs@aimmediamidwest.com



Notre Dame’s Ella Kirby (4) defends against South Gallia’s Tori Triplett (3) during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School.

Notre Dame’s Ella Kirby (4) defends against South Gallia’s Tori Triplett (3) during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School.


Paul Boggs | Daily Times

Notre Dame’s Kamryn Bradford (10) battles South Gallia’s Lindsey Wallace (2) for possession of a loose ball during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School.


Paul Boggs | Daily Times

PORTSMOUTH — Now this was a good end to the outgoing calendar year, and the incoming new one.

That’s because the Notre Dame Lady Titans, winners of 95 consecutive Southern Ohio Conference Division I affairs but truly needing another signature non-conference victory, got just that by getting defensive — overly even — on Thursday night.

The host and senior-less Lady Titans stymied South Gallia’s Lady Rebels to single digits in three of the four quarters, including for only 11 combined second-half points, as Notre Dame dispatched South Gallia 52-31 to close out 2021 on a high note —and perhaps set the 2022 tone the right way.

Prior to Thursday night, Notre Dame — the overwhelming favorite for another SOC I championship — had dropped three straight non-league but indeed against pure quality opponents in undefeated Trimble (55-46 on Dec. 18), Fisher Catholic (45-39 on Dec. 4), and 2021 Division IV Region 15 champion Waterford in the Southeast District championship tilt.

So the Lady Titans were overdue, but got the job done against a good South Gallia group.

Notre Dame, which is now 6-2, never trailed in the second half —following Kamryn Bradford’s buzzer-beating top of the key three-pointer to conclude the first (22-20 NDHS).

There were six first-half lead changes and a 17-17 tie, as the Lady Titans took total second-half control —scoring 15 points in each of the final two periods, plus limiting South Gallia to only five third-period points and six more in the fourth.

Notre Dame turned a first-half rockfight atop Sunrise Avenue into a second-half runaway, scoring the first six third-quarter points — and ultimately concluding the contest with a pair of 21-point leads (50-29 and 52-31) including the final score (52-31).

Notre Dame’s defense, or multiple man-to-man and zone defenses, indeed told the tale —as affirmed by veteran head coach J.D. McKenzie.

“They (Rebels) have four girls which are averaging double figures, and we knew they were going to be a big test for us defensively. But we’re getting better defensively it seems like every time out. I thought we did a good job of bouncing back and forth tonight with the different defenses that we used. We did a good job of recognizing where shooters were and not allowing penetration. We didn’t break down very often,” said McKenzie. “When they did get a shot off, we held them to one-and-out, and we outrebounded them 35-12. I couldn’t be prouder. When we play like this defensively, we can play with anybody. We maybe confused them with different looks. It slowed them down offensively, which is what we wanted to do, because from what we saw on film, they like to get up and down the floor. We wanted to limit their easy opportunities, and we wanted to capitalize on our easy opportunities and we did that.”

Two weeks ago, now 7-2 South Gallia ventured to Scioto County —and won 62-56 at another Division IV stronghold South Webster.

This time, Notre Dame dialed different defenses up and held it to half that amount —as South Gallia committed 18 turnovers, shot only 21-percent (9-of-43), and got outrebounded by a 3-1 margin (35-12).

Of the 23 Lady Rebel two-point attempts, their only makes were first and third-quarter baskets by Jessie Rutt —along with one apiece by Emma Clary in the second quarter and Tori Triplett in the third.

Speaking of Clary, the five-foot and 10-inch freshman and considered arguably the Lady Rebels’ top player, she scored just that second-stanza basket — and picked up two first-half fouls.

She shot 1-of-9 from the field, missed all three of her three-point attempts, and missed a fourth-quarter free throw.

“We did a good job on her (Clary), recognizing where she was at,” said McKenzie. “We started out with Gracie (Ashley) on her and then we put Annie (Dettwiller) on her, and bounced back and forth. We did a good job off the ball, being in the gaps when she tried to penetrate. We made her get rid of it and we didn’t allow her to get into the paint and make things happen. She likes to get in the lane and finish around the rim, but we just did a great job of keeping the ball out of there tonight.”

That forced the Lady Rebels to fire away from three-point territory, of which they shot 25-percent (5-of-20).

Because South Gallia hit a first-half four, including a pair from Rutt and one apiece in the second quarter by Tori Triplett and Macie Sanders, it kept close —but Bradford’s buzzer-beating bomb immediately answered Triplett’s triple, and gave the Lady Titans the lead for good.

Besides third-quarter baskets by Triplett and Rutt, the only other South Gallia second-half points were a Triplett third-quarter split of free throws, a Rutt fourth-quarter split of foul shots, two Dafney Clary charity tosses, and a Lindsey Wallace three-ball.

Sanders sank two first-quarter free throws, as did Rutt in the second quarter, as Rutt had five first-period points — when the Lady Rebels held their largest leads at 5-2 and 7-4.

Rutt, the lone senior on the floor for either team on Thursday night, racked up 13 points to pace all scorers.

She also emerged with six of the Lady Rebels’ 13 steals.

However, Notre Dame did the job as a team — with four players in double figures, and Dettwiller with five points on two third-quarter baskets and a split of second-stanza freebies not being one of them.

Katie Strickland paced the winners with a dozen points on half-a-dozen field goals —including 10 in the opening half and six in the first frame.

Gracie Ashley added 11 on three field goals and a perfect 5-of-5 free throws, while Bradford —with two deuces and two treys —and Ella Kirby, on two twos and 6-of-7 fourth-quarter free throws with the Lady Titans in the bonus situation the entire period, chipped in 10.

Kirby, following three straight Strickland baskets, closed the first quarter out with a buzzer-beater of her own.

Notre Dame doubled up the Lady Rebels in total field goals (18-9), and converted 14-of-18 foul shots — including a fourth-quarter split by Annabelle Ball.

The Lady Titans tallied 11-of-14 second-half free throws, as Bree Hicks had a fourth-quarter basket to round out their scoring.

“I’ve told a lot of people that we’ve got six girls that are capable of double figures every night. Annie is our leading scorer, but tonight she didn’t have to be. She did a good job of getting the ball to people who needed it and other people did good things,” said McKenzie. “Katie (Strickland) and Gracie (Ashley) did a great job on the boards giving us second-chance opportunities, Kamryn hit a couple of threes and Ella went to the line a lot in the fourth quarter and made her free throws. I think we’re a complete team in that we don’t rely on one person or two people. They are all capable of doing different things, and it makes us a harder matchup defensively when you have to guard all of them.”

Ashley added 10 rebounds for a strong double-double, while Strickland grabbed seven, Dettwiller six, and with Kirby and Bradford bagging four apiece.

As for Bradford, she made half of the squad’s eight steals —with Dettwiller (two) and Kirby (two) combining for the other four.

Kirby with four and Detttwiller with three made up the Lady Titans’ seven deflections.

Indeed, several Lady Titans stuffed the stat sheets —as they put down the South Gallia rebellion for a much-needed non-league win of good quality.

After all, consider the remainder of Notre Dame’s 2022 non-league schedule.

“We have a lot of tough games on our schedule coming up. We’ve got Newark Catholic, Berne Union, Vinton County, Minford and South Webster still to come. We’ve back-loaded our schedule with some tough games,” said McKenzie. “But that’s the way we wanted it. Play a lot of good games the second half of the season to get ready for the tournament.”

* * *

South Gallia 7 13 5 6 —31

Notre Dame 10 12 15 15 — 52

SOUTH GALLIA 31 (7-2)

Emma Clary 1 0-1 2, Lindsey Wallace 1 0-0 3, Tori Triplett 2 1-2 6, Macie Sanders 1 2-2 5, Jessie Rutt 4 3-4 13, Madison Summers 0 0-0 0, Dafney Clary 0 2-2 2, Sydni Hornsby 0 0-0 0, Ryleigh Halley 0 0-0 0; TOTALS 9 8-11 31; Three-point field goals: 5 (Jessie Rutt 2, Lindsey Wallace, Tori Triplett and Macie Sanders 1 apiece)

NOTRE DAME 52 (6-2)

Lilly Madden 0 0-0 0, Ella Kirby 2 6-7 10, Maddie Entler 0 0-0 0, Kamryn Bradford 4 0-0 10, Annie Dettwiller 2 1-2 5, Savannah Holtgrewe 0 0-0 0, Bree Hicks 0 0-0 0, Annabelle Ball 0 2-4 2, Kaylyn Darden 0 0-0 0, Mallory Boland 0 0-0 0, Gracie Ashley 3 5-5 11, Katie Strickland 6 0-0 12, Alivia Taylor 0 0-0 0; TOTALS 18 14-18 52; Three-point field goals: 2 (Kamryn Bradford 2)

Notre Dame’s Ella Kirby (4) defends against South Gallia’s Tori Triplett (3) during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School.
https://www.portsmouth-dailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2022/01/web1_SG-ND-Kirby.jpgNotre Dame’s Ella Kirby (4) defends against South Gallia’s Tori Triplett (3) during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School. Paul Boggs | Daily Times

Notre Dame’s Kamryn Bradford (10) battles South Gallia’s Lindsey Wallace (2) for possession of a loose ball during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School.
https://www.portsmouth-dailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2022/01/web1_SG-ND-Bradford.jpgNotre Dame’s Kamryn Bradford (10) battles South Gallia’s Lindsey Wallace (2) for possession of a loose ball during Thursday night’s non-league girls basketball game at Notre Dame High School. Paul Boggs | Daily Times
ND stymies SG 52-31

By Paul Boggs

pboggs@aimmediamidwest.com

Reach Paul Boggs at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1926, by email at pboggs@aimmediamidwest.com, or on Twitter @paulboggssports © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved

Reach Paul Boggs at (740) 353-3101 ext. 1926, by email at pboggs@aimmediamidwest.com, or on Twitter @paulboggssports © 2022 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reserved