WILMINGTON — For about eight minutes, things looked like the Greeneview Rams could be in for a close tussle Thursday, Feb. 16 with Cincinnati Seven Hills.
Then the two teams played the second quarter. Greeneview’s defense got extra stingy, Seven Hills couldn’t find the basket, and the rout was on.
After grabbing a 17-12 lead after one quarter, Greeneview outscored the Stingers 53-16 the rest of the way in a 70-28 win in the opening round of the Division III sectional tournament at Wilmington High School.
“I did expect us to play well, I’ll put it that way,” Greeneview coach Tim Hoelle said. “It’s the same thing we’d expected all season: Hopefully having our girls play hard from the very start, and having that translate into a win. It did tonight.
“We executed our game plan, did what we needed to do. I’m very happy. It’s a good first-round win for our young team, and a good way to start the postseason.”
Ten of the 11 Rams players listed in the game program scored at least two points in the win. Faith Strickle led everyone with 18 points, Frankie Fife was next with 14 points and Sabrina Saunders finished with nine.
Greeneview outscored Seven Hills 19-2 in the second quarter, to put things away. Hoelle credited his bench players for picking up the intensity in the second quarter.
Seven Hills’ coach said her team lost their intensity at about the same time.
“We had a good first quarter. We boxed out, we had our hands in the faces of their shooters. And then we played the second quarter, we quit doing those things, and they went on a run,” Seven Hills coach Tyler McIlwraith said. “Greeneview is a pretty good team. Give all the credit to them. I look forward to seeing their next-round game on Tuesday.”
Seven Hills scored its first points of the second quarter with 1:57 left in the half, on a Maggie Kersting inside score. By then, the Rams were out front 30-14.
Greeneview, the tournament’s No. 10 seed, will take on the winner of Saturday’s Feb. 18 game between No. 16 East Clinton and No. 6 Williamsburg. That second-round game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at Wilmington High.
The good news for the Stingers is that they don’t graduate anyone from this season’s 9-12 team. Kersting led Seven Hills with 16 points, Ava Romerill was next with six.
Hoelle said he’s scouted both Williamsburg and East Clinton already.
“I know a lot about both teams, that’s all I’ll say,” Hoelle said. “Whoever wins, we’ll be ready to go.”
You can reach John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.