CLAYTON — At the conclusion of the Beavercreek-Northmont girls basketball game, Northmont coach Virgil Carter kept looking back at the first quarter, a time when the game was tied before the Lady Battlin’ Beavers closed the half on a 30 point run. The run set the tone for the rest of the game as Beavercreek pulled away for a 65-29 victory over Northmont at Northmont High School on Saturday.
“I don’t think Beavercreek did anything special, it was us,” Carter said. “We didn’t feel like playing today, that was the game. I mean they got up 6-2, 8-4 and we quit. That was the game, the game was over in the first quarter. The game was over probably in the first four minutes of the game, we were done. And so that was it.”
The Lady Battlin’ Beavers won their fifth consecutive game after starting the season 3-2. Beavercreek hasn’t lost since Dec. 7 and currently sits in second place in the loaded Greater Western Ohio Conference’s Central division.
Beavercreek outscored Northmont 17-4 and 24-7 in the first half and didn’t allow the Lady Bolts to score more than nine points in a quarter. Northmont turned the ball over 15 times including 10 in the first half and watched as the Lady Battlin’ Beavers turned most of the turnovers into fast break points. Northmont only connected on one 3-pointer the entire game.
“I thought we did a real nice job in that,” Beavercreek coach Ed Zink said about the man to man defense his team played. “I thought we really pressured the ball well and took some things away from them. Second half we went to zone just because we need to work on that. And I thought they did a little bit better job of moving the ball against our zone there for a while, but then the kids kind of settled down. But yes, overall, I was happy with how we played defensively.”
Once again, the Lady Battlin’ Beavers were led by senior guard Aubrey Zimmerman and junior forward Natalie Knight, who each scored 15 points. Sophomore forward Rachel Mitchell scored eight points and sophomore Kayla Shields finished with six points.
“That’s actually awesome,” said Knight about her and Aubrey’s performance. “I think Aubrey and I really work well together, and once we get that fast break, the guards did an awesome job running it up the court, so (that) helped me to get that open spot, you know the layup’s right there.”
The Lady Bolts were led by junior Sierra Sanders and senior Raquel Robinson, who each scored six points. Seniors Kaitlyn Maas and Shaeyla Givens and sophomore Shelby Stephens each scored four points.
With the victory, Beavercreek improved to 8-2 overall and 1-0 in conference. Northmont fell to 2-6 overall and 0-1 in the conference.
With the game tied at 4, Knight and Zimmerman each hit a layup to start the 37-7 run that the Lady Battlin’ Beavers carried until halftime. The Lady Bolts opened the third quarter with back to back layups by Robinson, but Beavercreek closed the quarter on a 14-5 run.
Much like the third quarter, Northmont opened the fourth with back to back baskets, this time coming on a pair of steals and layups by Shelby Stephens. The Lady Battlin’ Beavers closed the game on a 10-5 run, but Northmont finished the game with four free throws, two from Sanders and two from Johna Eller.
The schedule doesn’t get any easier for the Lady Bolts, who will play GWOC South leader Springboro on Monday, Dec. 23, their final game before winter break. The Lady Battlin’ Beavers will also face some tough tests, starting with a trip to Fairborn on Dec. 27 followed by a trip to Alter on Dec. 30.