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ACAC CHAMPIONS

January 28, 2013
By Bob Lapadot of Garrett High School



GARRETT — When Heritage came out breathing fire, it was the defense.

Just settling things down on senior night with a share of the conference title in reach, it was the defense.

When the Patriots turned up the pressure defensively and made a late charge, it was the defense.

Saturday night featured a shutout quarter, and then staring down some late-game pressure with three huge stops to nail down the win. Garrett sent its seniors — Becca Oliver and Emma Riedley — out as winners and tied for the Allen County Athletic Conference championship with a 44-30 win.

The Railroaders (15-5 overall, 6-1 ACAC) assured themselves of a share of the league title. Leo and Woodlan also entered the evening with only one conference loss.

Garrett had defeated Heritage in the conference tournament semifinals at the Memorial Coliseum 16 days earlier, and Patriots (12-7, 3-4) were set to return the favor, hitting two threes and taking a 14-11 lead after one quarter.

They didn’t score for the next 13 minutes, missing 14 straight shots. The Railroaders outscored them 18-0 in the second quarter, hitting three threes of their own.

“That’s the thing about this group, they adjust,” Garrett coach Bob Lapadot said. “We’ve made pretty good adjustments in the other six quarters we’ve played them. To hold that quality of a team to zero points in the second quarter was huge.

“Our offense continued to click, 18-0 (in the second quarter), that gave us the cushion we needed. We were able to just sustain it.”

Taylor Smith had 13 points and nine rebounds for Garrett. Kaitlin Wisel hit two threes and scored 12. and Brandi Dawson — wearing a mask to protect a broken nose, scored 11.

Hannah Beckman and Tee McGraw had five each for the Patriots.

Garrett had scoring troubles of its own in the second half, making just 4-of-21 from the field. The Railroaders didn’t go inside as much to the 6-foot Smith, who had all six of her field goals in the first half, but still got quality scoring chances.

“We’re getting exactly what we want. We moved the ball well and executed,” Lapadot said. “I can’t call timeout and magically make the ball go in the basket. We’re getting 4-footers. They just weren’t falling.”

Heritage gained energy from some trapping defense and made a 10-0 run, with McKenzie Brown’s three cutting the Garrett lead to 37-29 with 3:49 left. The Patriots had two possessions down by eight, but the Railroaders held firm.

Then Wisel took the ball to the basket to score, and Dawson made a steal at the other end, and Garrett fans were squirming much less.

“We’re a defensive team. When we need to change momentum or we need to show poise, we do it defensively,” Lapadot said.

The championship was special for a team that needed to fit lots of pieces together when the year began, and faced an uncertain future. After a string of tough losses early, Garrett has won 13 of 14.

“A lot of people didn’t think we could do this,” Lapadot said. “A lot of people thought two years ago might be the end. We’re back to 15 wins, back to a championship.

“It means a lot to me for them. I’ve been through this, our staff has been through this, but these kids haven’t. That banner (listing the school’s ACAC championships) is going to be there forever. You’re going to see that 13 up there, and it’s always going to mean something.”

Garrett JV 17, Heritage 16

Lyndsey Gibson scored from the left baseline with 13 seconds left to lift the Railroaders to the win. Garrett then didn’t let Heritage get a shot away on its final possession. Rachel DePew had six points and Krisina Martinez scored four for Garrett.

Garrett 44, Heritage 30

Heritage

Players    fg-fga    ft-fta    tp    rb    as    st

Beckman*    1-3    2-2    5    0    1    0

Biberstine*    1-1    2-2    4    3    0    0

Saalfrank*    1-10    0-0    2    5    0    0

Bradtmueller*    1-6    2-3    4    3    0    5

Knapke*    2-9    0-0    4    6    1    1

Neimeyer    1-2    0-0    3    2    0    1

McGraw    2-7    0-0    5    5    0    0

Brown    1-2    0-0    3    0    1    0

Wherry    0-0    0-0    0    0    0    0

totals    10-40    6-7    30    31    3    7

Garrett

Players    fg-fga    ft-fta    tp    rb    as    st

Somers*    1-8    0-0    2    6    3    3

Oliver*    2-5    1-2    6    4    3    0

Dawson*    4-12    2-5    11    6    1    2

Wisel*    3-11    4-6    12    4    3    1

Riedley*    0-0    0-0    0    0    0    0

Smith    6-9    1-2    13    9    0    1

Stafford    0-1    0-0    0    1    0    2

DePew    0-0    0-0    0    2    0    0

Yarian    0-0    0-0    0    0    0    0

Gibson    0-0    0-0    0    0    0    0

Sutton    0-0    0-0    0    0    0    0

totals    16-47    8-15    44    38    10    9

Heritage    14    0    8    8    —    30

Garrett    11    18    8    7    —    44

    Three-point shooting — Heritage 4-13 (Neimeyer 1-1, Beckman 1-1, Brown 1-1, McGraw 1-5, Saalfrank 0-2, Knapke 0-3), Garrett 4-16 (Wisel 2-4, Oliver 1-3, Dawson 1-6, Somers 0-3). Total fouls — Heritage 16, Garrett 8. Turnovers — Heritage 17, Garrett 10. Blocked shots — Riedley, Smith, Knapke 3, Saalfrank.

 
 

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