Category: Wheelersburg

Lady Pirates’ comeback falls short to Russell


Russell (KY)62Win

Lady Pirates’ comeback falls short to Russell

By Paul Boggs


IRONTON — For this season anyway, at least through the first 48 minutes they played there, the iron at Ironton High School’s Conley Center was unkind to the Wheelersburg Lady Pirates.

That said, in the end, if only the Lady Pirates could have —or would have — shot in the first half like they did in the second on Saturday against the Russell (Ky.) Lady Red Devils.

That’s because Wheelersburg fell behind by as much as 26 points twice in the third quarter, only to furiously storm back and finally — and miraculously — get to within four points with only five seconds remaining, before falling 62-57 to Russell as part of the annual Tackett’s Body Shop Shootout at Ironton High School.

For the Lady Pirates, they have 17 victories on the season — en route to earning a share of the Southern Ohio Conference Division II championship, and being ranked seventh for the second consecutive week in the Associated Press Ohio High School girls basketball Division III poll.

But Wheelersburg’s only now two setbacks have come inside Ironton’s Conley Center, as the Lady Pirates shot just 3-of-20 from three-point range — en route to losing at Ironton 46-43 back on Dec. 30.

Now indeed Ironton is a good defensive team, and so is the now 16-6 Lady Red Devils, which forced Wheelersburg into 5-of-22 (23-percent) first-half shooting — including 1-of-9 (11-percent) from three-point land.

They also turned the Lady Pirates over a dozen times, which is out of character for Wheelersburg, especially given how smooth — and so often — it executes its half-court dribble-drive and kick-out oriented offense.

Combine that with Russell shooting 15-of-25 from the field in the opening half for a sizzling 60-percent, including 13-of-19 from inside the arc for a fiery 68-percent against the smaller Lady Pirates, and Wheelersburg was down by as much as 45-19 and 48-22 midway through the third quarter.

Russell had amassed 19 points apiece in each of the opening two periods, and another 10 markers through the first four minutes of the third.

However, in a dramatic tale of two halves — or actually the final 11 minutes and 13 seconds to be precise — Wheelersburg began to catch fire from the field, and outscored the Lady Red Devils 35-14 over that same span.

The Lady Pirates popped five second-half three-pointers, spearheaded by 13 second-half points from Alaina Keeney and another dozen from freshman Makenna Walker —and ultimately erased the 26-point deficit down to just four at 61-57 with five seconds remaining.

But Kaeli Ross, who was named Russell’s Most Outstanding Player and who poured in a game-high 21 points on seven total field goals and 3-of-4 free throws, registered the second of a double-bonus foul-shot situation to make it 62-57 with just three seconds to play.

Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin said he was plenty proud of his Lady Pirates for charging back, but wishes — of course — the first 20 minutes had played out differently.

“I honestly didn’t think our energy was very good in the first half. When you are not making shots and then you have somebody else who is making shots, there were times it was just way too easy for them (Red Devils). Some of that is how good they are, and some of that is we have to be better defensively. But I give our kids credit for crawling right back into the game when they could have folded,” said Spradlin. “We just didn’t play with any kind of urgency in that first half. In the second half, we played with all kinds of urgency, but there was nothing else to do at that point.”

After trailing 2-0 on a Kaylee Darnell basket just 46 seconds in and then again at 5-2 on Keeney canning a three-pointer on the next Lady Pirate possession at the 6:50 mark, the Lady Red Devils —one of the top programs in Kentucky’s 16th District —didn’t allow another field goal for the next nine-and-a-half minutes.

In fact, the only Lady Pirate points over that span were a pair of Darnell free throws at the 1:47 mark of the opening quarter.

By then, the experienced and speedy Lady Red Devils —which featured three frontcourt starters at each six-foot tall combined with the 5-9 senior Ross and eighth-grade sensation Shaelyn Steele — dialed up 10 consecutive points to lead 15-7.

Speaking of 15-7, that was the total in which Wheelersburg was outrebounded by Russell in the opening half —in which it trailed 19-7 after the first quarter and 38-15 at halftime.

Ross — who rained in four of the Lady Red Devils’ six three-point goals including a key one in the fourth quarter to temporarily trip up the Lady Pirates’ remarkable rally — recorded her second three with 21 seconds left in the second stanza for Russell’s largest lead by that point.

Ross amounted 14 first-half points, including her three-pointer that tied it at 5-5, as Steele scored 12 in the first 16 minutes —part of 18 for the entire game on seven total field goals and 3-of-7 free throws.

“They have size underneath, they have a really good point guard (Steele) in the eighth-grader, they have another shooter (Ross). There are a lot of matchup troubles with them,” said Spradlin. “When you help off too much on the point guard, you’re giving the post player a layup and you have another shooter that you have to worry about who can score off the catch or the drive.”

The Lady Red Devils’ lead soon swelled to 45-19 on Ross’ third-quarter three, followed by Bella Quinn connecting on her trifecta for the 48-22 advantage.

But Wheelersburg’s Walker and Ellie Kallner countered with threes to make it 48-31, as the Lady Pirates trailed 48-33 following three.

The Lady Red Devils’ only other points of the period were a Kate Ruggles basket and two free throws from Aubrey Hill, who had 10 first-half points on four first-quarter field goals and 2-of-2 second-quarter foul shots.

Walker, who was named Wheelersburg’s MOP with 14 points on five total field goals and 3-of-3 freebies, drove in for an old-fashioned thee-point play to make it 48-36 with 6:34 remaining — followed by Keeney converting another three for a 50-39 deficit 56 seconds later.

Keeney and Darnell delivered a team-high 15 points apiece, and sandwiched a Lady Pirate pair of triples around Ross’ for Russell for a pair of nine-point (55-46 and 58-49) deficits.

Steele scored at the two-minute mark to make it 60-51, but the Lady Red Devils didn’t make their free throws in the fourth —meshing just 4-of-10 after opening the first three quarters 8-of-8.

Ross, however, hit her second attempt with only three tics to go —making it 62-57 and the Lady Pirates unable to charge back any further.

The end also kept Darnell from scoring her 1,000th career point on Saturday, as she sits just two points shy of the milestone — and will most likely get it early on Monday night in the Lady Pirates’ SOC II tilt against Eastern.

Russell held her to only 4-of-18 shooting, but she sank a perfect 6-of-6 free throws — part of 9-of-10 for Wheelersburg as a team.

Both clubs attempted 52 total field goals and drilled six threes, but Wheelersburg took 21 tries (29-percent) — while Russell only attempted a dozen (50-percent) from deep.

The Lady Pirates posted a 48-percent shooting clip from two-point range on 15-of-31, while Russell shot 40-percent (16-of-40) from inside the arc.

Kallner chipped in two deuces in addition to her trey for seven points, as she also led Wheelersburg with eight rebounds —  and dished out eight assists.

Lexie Rucker in the second quarter, and Macee Eaton and Brittani Wolfenbarker in the third, added a basket apiece for the Lady Pirates.

Spradlin said his squad put forth a “fantastic effort” in the second half.

“I like to play teams that are good and see what we have to work on. We obviously shot the ball better in the second half, but it’s funny how those things happen. We always talk about how those things are contagious,” he said. “The good body language is contagious and the bad body language is contagious. In the first half, we felt a little sorry for ourselves because they were making shots and we weren’t. It’s so easy to get down on yourself. Our effort and body language was so much better in the second half, and it seemed like our shooting came along with that.”

The Lady Pirates, as aforementioned, play on Monday night against visiting Eastern —with an opportunity to lock up the SOC II championship outright.

At least, with three regular-season tilts to go, Wheelersburg won’t be returning to Ironton this season — where the iron was indeed unkind.

* * *

Russell 19 19 10 14 — 62

Wheelersburg 7 8 18 24—57

RUSSELL 62 (16-6)

Shaelyn Steele 7 3-7 18, Bella Quinn 1 0-0 3, Kaeli Ross 7 3-4 21, Malia Blevins 2 2-3 6, Kate Ruggles 1 0-0 2, Campbell Jachimczuk 0 0-0 0, Aubrey Hill 4 4-4 12; TOTALS 22 12-18 62; Three-point goals: 6 (Kaeli Ross 4, Shaelyn Steele and Bella Quinn 1 apiece)


Lauren Jolly 0 0-0 0, Brittani Wolfenbarker 1 0-0 2, Lani Irwin 0 0-0 0, Alaina Keeney 6 0-0 15, Ellie Kallner 3 0-0 7, Kaylee Darnell 4 6-6 15, Makenna Walker 5 3-3 14, Lexie Rucker 1 0-0 2, Macee Eaton 1 0-1 2; TOTALS 21 9-10 57; Three-point goals: 6 (Alaina Keeney 3, Ellie Kallner, Kaylee Darnell and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)

Russell (KY)





Date League Season
February 1, 2020 SEO 2019-20



WHEELERSBURG — Indeed, Wheelersburg’s Alli McQuay can’t complain

WHEELERSBURG — Indeed, Wheelersburg’s Alli McQuay can’t complain.

Already a regional champion with her Lady Pirate teammates, and individually a Division III first-team all-Ohioan, McQuay continues to make positive headlines in her outstanding volleyball career.

While Wheelersburg’s chapter came to an end with a state tournament berth, her latest narrative started officially on Wednesday morning —when McQuay announced her intention to play college volleyball with the close-to-home Shawnee State University Bears.

McQuay’s signing ceremony took place at Wheelersburg High School, as she was flanked by her parents Rob and Cindy McQuay; Wheelersburg High School head volleyball coach Allen Perry, Shawnee State University assistant volleyball coach Devan Scarberry; her Lady Pirate teammates and several other family members and friends.

Last season, the five-foot 10-inch middle hitter McQuay —and fellow senior Mallory Bergan —co-captained the Lady Pirates all the way to the program’s first-ever regional championship in the sport.

In addition, by being named the District 14 Coaches Association Division III Player of the Year, McQuay captured first-team all-Ohio honors.

She now becomes a Bear, but more importantly continues playing for four more years the sport she simply loves.

“Four more years of the sport I love to do. I’m very excited about it,” said McQuay.

She should be, as Shawnee State is roughly 20 minutes from Wheelersburg —and remaining nearby for her family and friends to watch her play was important.

The Bears are an NAIA Division I program, although they are currently interviewing and continuing the hiring process for a new head coach.

Susan Shelton, the coach of the past nine seasons, resigned f0llowing the 2019 campaign.

The Scioto County native Scarberry, who served as Shelton’s assistant for five years, remains on the staff —and naturally has been heavily involved in the recruitment of McQuay.

Although, McQuay said she wanted to stay home —and go far.

“I knew I didn’t want to go far for school, and so I’ve been talking to programs and probably the farthest is like three hours away. I just kept narrowing it down and narrowing it down, and Shawnee is really just a good fit,” she said. “I’m not going to have any debt, it’s close to home, I can run up to church on Sundays and my family is around.”

Volleyball began at Wheelersburg High for McQuay as — in fact — a family affair, as her sister was a Pirate senior when she was a freshman.

She played primarily in a reserve role that year, but still saw 72 sets worth of match action.

In her final three seasons, as Perry took over the program in McQuay’s sophomore year, the Lady Pirates captured the Division III Southeast District championship —with her senior season co-captaining along with Bergan.

“I loved playing here at Wheelersburg,” said McQuay. “My sophomore year, were really started to get better and explode. We won districts and made it to the regionals, but we didn’t do anything and got swept. But this year, we just said we’re making it.”

Did the Lady Pirates ever.

This year, Wheelersburg rolled to another Southern Ohio Conference Division II title, and went a perfect 22-0 in the regular season — without losing even an entire set in 61 sets played.

“At team camp, we hadn’t had any practices, and we were looking so good. We just told ourselves that we’re going to do it. We came and worked hard every day, and just had that mindset that nothing was going to stop us,” said McQuay.

Of course, that consecutive sets won streak is a program record —as the Lady Pirates played exactly 73 sets before finally losing one, or actually the first two, in the regional championship match against Hiland.

“It’s just really cool to say we did that. Not many teams across the country can say they won 73 sets in a row,” said McQuay. “It just kept our momentum rolling and we kept telling ourselves that streak is not going to end. And even when it did end, we said our season is not over. We still have some time.”

Indeed, as Yogi Berra would say, it isn’t over until it’s over.

That’s because in absolutely epic, unbelievable and miraculous fashion — and even facing match point by the Hawks in the third game — Wheelersburg avoided elimination by scoring the final three points to stunningly win that set 26-24.

The Lady Pirates then won the fourth set 25-20, and simply dominated the fifth and decisive set 15-5 to punch their ticket to their history-making — yet coveted — state tournament.

“We just worked hard and believed we were going to do that (advance to state). As a senior and as a co-captain, I wanted to go. I did NOT want to lose,” said McQuay.

The Lady Pirates finished 27-1 in 2019 — after also going 22-0 in the regular season the year before, while finishing 26-1 and losing to state power Tuscarawas Valley in the regional final.

McQuay’s career ended at Wheelersburg with her amassing 791 kills in 315 sets played.

She played in at least 72 sets all four years, while consistently recording 268 kills as a sophomore, 255 as a junior and 254 as a senior.

She also had at least 577 attacks over those final three seasons, including 633 as a junior.

Her hitting percentage for her career was .302, as she also collected 134 blocks including 40 solo —and served up 151 aces.

Perry praised McQuay’s work ethic and commitment to the sport — and said she was the Lady Pirates’ “go-to” gal.

“Alli is a hard worker, she studies the game, and is just very dedicated to the game. I couldn’t be more proud of her than today,” said the coach. “As a sophomore, when I took over the program, she was already well-trained. She had played for club teams and stuff like that for so long, so her game was well-developed. Just her maturity as a player developed for three years. She developed into a great court leader, and someone whom we looked for when we needed that crunch point. She was clutch. Anytime that we were struggling, we would look for her. She is just a smart player, she can put the ball down and get us a point. There were a lot of schools looking at her, but I’m just excited for her to be able to play at Shawnee State for herself. I know she wanted to be there.”

McQuay said she will be a right-side hitter at the collegiate level, and expressed a desire to improve upon her overall strength.

“I just need to get stronger all around. That will significantly help my play,” she said. “And I’m going to outwork everyone until I make it on the court.”

She said she is undecided upon a major, but knows she wanted to be a Bear.

Indeed, it’s Shawnee State all the way for McQuay —just the latest positive vibe in her decorated career.

Burg takes 1st place lead with win over Northwest



WHEELERSBURG — While Wheelersburg will fire away, and often make, three-point goals each and every outing — the Lady Pirates indeed get defensive like nobody’s business.

And, after all, championships —especially in basketball —are won with the defensive end, and the host Lady Pirates pitched a gem of such against the Northwest Lady Mohawks in Thursday night’s massive Southern Ohio Conference Division II tilt.

With first-place in the division at stake, Wheelersburg — the defending SOC II champion and current league leader —stymied the Lady Mohawks for 32 points over the final 28 minutes and 52 seconds, and captured a critical 56-42 victory in its bid to go back-to-back and wire-to-wire.

That’s correct.

After limiting the Lady Mohawks to their season-low of 35 points in a 44-35 triumph back on Dec. 12, Wheelersburg went at least four minutes and 50 seconds — TWICE — without allowing a single solitary Northwest first-half point.

By the end of the third quarter, the Lady Pirates pushed their advantage to their largest at 17 points (45-28), before fending off a hard-charging Mohawk comeback bid that actually closed the gap to nine points (47-38 and 49-40) twice.

In fact, the Lady Mohawks had a chance to get within seven with three minutes remaining, but missed a shot from short range —as Ellie Kallner and Makenna Walker canned back-to-back three-pointers to end the threat and salt the win.

And, it wasn’t just any ordinary win for Wheelersburg.

The Lady Pirates, ranked seventh in the third weekly Associated Press Ohio High School girls basketball Division III poll, posted their 15th victory in 16 tries —their only setback coming by three points at ninth-ranked Ironton on Dec. 30.

More importantly, they are now better by the dozen atop the SOC II — with a 12-0 league record and only four more league duels left.

The loss left Northwest with a 16-2 record, and an 11-2 tally in the division — with its only two defeats coming against the Lady Pirates.

If Wheelersburg wins its two SOC II road shows next week, including at Minford on Monday night and at Waverly on Thursday night, it will clinch at least a share of its second straight SOC II championship.

What won Wheelersburg Thursday night’s return bout was its lock-down defense, its depth and its experience — as the Lady Pirates forced 21 turnovers compared to only committing six, and went nine deep compared to only six for the Lady Mohawks’ majority minutes.

Following Northwest racing out to a 10-2 lead in a matter of three minutes and eight seconds, including a three-pointer by Haidyn Wamsley right off the opening tip, the Lady Pirates simply put the clamps down.

The Lady Mohawks had 13 first-half turnovers, attempted only 19 first-half shots, and amounted just eight points over the final 12 minutes and 52 seconds of that opening half.

Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin said his squad’s defensive effort was “phenomenal”.

“Our goal is always to try to make things as tough as possible on people. From the point it was 10-2, we were really good defensively and we forced some tough shots. They finished with 18 in the first half. It was a lot of kids too, because we rotated in a lot of kids tonight. We wanted to use our depth to make it as difficult as we could on them,” he said.

The Lady Pirates did just that, as eight of the nine that played reached the scoring column —with only Alaina Keeney reaching double figures for a game-high 14 points, on five field goals and 3-of-4 free throws.

Wheelersburg led for the final 23 minutes and 25 seconds, as the Lady Pirates put together nine unanswered points in the final 4:35 of the opening period —taking their first lead at 11-10 on a big Brittani Wolfenbarker three-pointer off the bench.

But the senior Wolfenbarker, already a Shawnee State softball signee, wasn’t done.

With Wheelersburg leading 13-12, she pulled the trigger again —and splashed another trifecta to truly get the Lady Pirates kick-started.

“We’ve been saying for some time that one of these nights, a team is going to catch one of her good shooting nights. Brittani is a kid who can shoot the ball really well. She has shown some flashes like that,” said Spradlin. “She came in tonight and hit those two pretty quick ones. Those role players, those bench players came in and were important for us.”

Kallner, who followed Keeney with nine points, connected for her initial three-pointer to make it 19-14 with 6:13 remaining in the second quarter —and Northwest never was within five points for the final 21 minutes and five seconds.

Northwest coach Dave Frantz said “Wheelersburg is the most athletic and quickest team we’ll see all year, no doubt”.

Frantz, the Lady Mohawks’ track and field coach who is familiar with that Lady Pirate program, also discussed how deep and quick they are.

“They bring in several girls off the bench, but they are athletic with that. Their depth and athleticism hurt us tonight,” he said. “It was a physical game too, and I felt like they out-physicaled us at times. That’s where we have to just learn.”

In addition to Wolfenbarker’s two triples, Macee Eaton added eight points on three field goals and 2-of-2 third-quarter free throws, while Walker chipped in two deuces besides her comeback-killing fourth-quarter trey.

Lexie Rucker, who played in the second quarter, also helped out.

In fact, Wheelersburg’s leading scorer on the season — junior Kaylee Darnell —scored a season-low seven points on two field goals and 3-of-4 free throws.

But, the Lady Pirates play so well as a team that Darnell doesn’t necessarily need to go off for 20-plus points every single night.

Especially defensively, as Northwest went the final 4:52 of the first quarter without a point —as well as a 4:50 stretch of the second period.

After Wamsley scored to get the Lady Mohawks to within 19-16 with 5:43 to go before halftime, Wheelersburg went for nine more unanswered — including Lani Irwin’s three that made it 24-16 with 3:07 showing.

Keirah Potts, the Lady Mohawks’ sole senior and who paced the guests with 11 points on five total field goals, ended the epic droughts both times.

With Wheelersburg leading 28-18 at halftime, Keeney spearheaded the third-quarter onslaught, scoring eight of her 14 in the canto, including her only three-pointer that made it 43-28 with 30 seconds remaining.

Walker then made a steal and layup on the next possession, resulting in a 34-18 outscoring of the Lady Mohawks in the middle two stanzas — as Wheelersburg was up 45-28 following three.

The Lady Pirates held a 20-18 advantage in total field goals, but scored 21 points off seven three-pointers — and made more foul shots (nine) than Northwest even attempted (seven).

Spradlin said his team had to settle down offensively after the slow start, which it did.

“I thought they (Lady Mohawks) got a little tired in stretches, and I thought our ball movement and offensive rebounding was good all night. We also did a good job of picking our points, knowing when to pull up and shoot the little short jumper and when to keep driving and draw some contact. Northwest’s length comes into play, and even when we get around some of their defenders, you still have to finish over top of them. They are big, they are athletic, they are well-coached and they all play hard with a lot of intensity and effort,” he said.

And, as Frantz said, they don’t give up.

Potts played with a serious flu-bug, and Reagan Lewis was the only substitute of two total which played in all four quarters.

Wamsley wound up with nine points on four field goals, as Valerie Copas scored seven, including a three-pointer to make it 8-2 and another to get the Lady Mohawks to within 47-38 with 4:22 remaining.

Trailing 49-40, the Mohawks missed an excellent opportunity to get within seven —and were outscored 7-2 over the final 2:45.

After Kallner and Walker’s threes made it 55-42, Kallner split a pair of free throws for the final point.

“Our girls never gave up. We go down 17, the next thing we get it back to 12, then get it back to nine twice. We came here ready for the fight, and I thought we gave a fight,” said Frantz. “Keirah Potts missed the last two days of school…sick as can be. She never came out of the game tonight and she wasn’t going to. She was going to be our senior leader. Some of these girls never came out of the game.”

Kloe Montgomery scored six points on three baskets, Ava Jenkins had five points in the fourth frame, and Lewis landed two buckets for four for the Lady Mohawks.

Frantz was asked if he would like a third matchup with Wheelersburg — which would, of course, occur in the Division III postseason tournament.

Thursday’s contest sure felt like a tournament tilt — with a good crowd in attendance for both clubs.

“Wheelersburg is one of the best teams in the area. But our girls will welcome a matchup with anybody,” he said. “We would love to see Wheelersburg again, which means we would both have advanced pretty far. Dusty (Spradlin) does a nice job with his girls, and the best team won tonight. But we’ll bounce back. We will. I am very proud of our girls and how hard we worked and prepared for this game. Just wish we could have came out on the other (winning) end.”

That was what Wheelersburg did —to now take a stranglehold on the SOC II.

“We have four league games and two non-league games left,” said Spradlin. “This is a good win for us, but there’s no rest. We’ll get back to work and hopefully we can continue to finish this regular season strong.”

Wheelersburg will travel to Greenup County on Saturday for one of those two non-league encounters, while Northwest will return to the road —and return to SOC II action —on Monday night at South Webster.

* * *

Northwest 10 8 10 14 — 42

Wheelersburg 11 17 17 11 — 56

NORTHWEST 42 (16-2, 11-2 SOC II)

Terah Webb 0 0-0 0, Valerie Copas 2 1-5 7, Haidyn Wamsley 4 0-0 9, Keirah Potts 5 0-0 11, Ava Jenkins 2 1-1 5, Reagan Lewis 2 0-0 4, Kloe Montgomery 3 0-1 6; TOTALS 18 2-7 42; Three-point goals: 4 (Valerie Copas 2, Haidyn Wamsley and Keirah Potts 1 apiece)

WHEELERSBURG 56 (15-1, 12-0 SOC II)

Lauren Jolly 1 0-1 2 Brittani Wolfenbarker 2 0-0 6, Lani Irwin 1 0-0 3, Alaina Keeney 5 3-4 14, Ellie Kallner 3 1-2 9, Kaylee Darnell 2 3-4 7, Makenna Walker 3 0-0 7, Lexie Rucker 0 0-0 0, Macee Eaton 3 2-2 8; TOTALS 20 9-13 56; Three-point goals: 7 (Brittani Wolfenbarker and Ellie Kallner 2 apiece, Lani Irwin, Alaina Keeney and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Brittani Wolfenbarker-60000
Lani Irwin-30000
Lexie Rucker-00000
Makenna Walker-70000
Macee Eaton-80000
Kaylee Darnell-70000
Alaina Keeney-140000
Ellie Kallner-90000
Lauren Jolly-20000
 Total 560000


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Haidyn Wamsley-90000
Keirah Potts-110000
Ava Jenkins-50000
Reagan Lewis-40000
Kloe Montgomery-60000
Terah Webb-00000
Valeria Copas-70000
 Total 420000


Date League Season
January 23, 2020 SEO 2019-20



Keeney, Lady Pirates chop down Oaks


Oak Hill40Loss

Keeney, Lady Pirates chop down Oaks

“Burg hits 10 3s in 58-40 win

By Paul Boggs


WHEELERSBURG — Usually, any game against the tradition-rich Oak Hill Lady Oaks is a “big” one —and not exactly a “trap” matchup.

But on Monday night, ahead of Thursday night’s massive encore against visiting Northwest, the host Wheelersburg Lady Pirates played the Lady Oaks in what amounted to that “trap” tilt for the Orange and Black.

However, no worries for Alaina Keeney and her Lady Pirate company, as Wheelersburg avoided any traps — or speedbumps —on its road to meeting the Lady Mohawks.

That’s because Keeney canned half of the Lady Pirates’ 10 three-point goals, Kaylee Darnell drained four herself, and Wheelersburg rolled to a 58-40 Southern Ohio Conference Division II victory and completed the season sweep of Oak Hill.

“Teams are going to try and do different things against us the second time around, but it was another great effort by our kids where we did a lot of good things again,” said Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin. “Overall, another good win in the SOC II to keep us plugging along here.”

The Lady Oaks’ only lead was at 2-0 just 15 seconds in, as the Lady Pirates reeled off the next 10 points over the next three minutes — and Wheelersburg began to bomb away from three-point land en route to the runaway win.

The Lady Oaks only got to within 10-4 in the opening quarter and 17-12 in the second on a Baylee Howell three-pointer, as it was Wheelersburg unleashing a fury of threes over a span of 16 minutes.

Against Oak Hill’s zone or junk defenses, the Lady Pirates popped 10 total trifectas —five from Keeney towards her game-high 19 points, four from Darnell towards her 16 points, and one from Ellie Kallner which made it 8-2 early in the first quarter.

“That’s where the good ball movement and unselfish play comes in,” said Spradlin. “Alaina (Keeney) really made them pay. Last game, it was Ellie (Kallner) which made West pay. Tonight, Oak Hill tried to guard three of our kids (Keeney, Kallner and Darnell) and put two others in the paint. It’s important for us to be ready for those things, make good decisions and make sure we get good shots every trip.”

With the victory, the Lady Pirates —the defending SOC II champions and current league leaders — raised their stellar record to 14-1, and are now 11-0 in the division.

They also cleared the way for Thursday’s SOC II bout against Northwest, which is 11-1 in the league (16-1 overall) —as Wheelersburg won 44-35 at Northwest on Dec. 12 for the Lady Mohawks’ only loss.

More on that one in a bit.

Typically, a meeting with the Mohawks might serve as a “trap” for the Lady Pirates — in anticipation with a showdown against Oak Hill, one of the most successful girls basketball programs in Ohio under veteran head coach Doug Hale.

The Lady Oaks, in addition to several times taking the SOC II title, are the three-time Division III state runners-up (2004, 2009 and 2011).

But this season, Oak Hill has been up-and-down —and fell to 10-7 and 7-5 in the SOC II.

Wheelersburg completed the season sweep, as the Lady Pirates captured a 49-34 victory at Oak Hill on Dec. 9.

They didn’t make 10 treys that night, but Wheelersburg’s excellent ball movement had the Lady Oaks chasing on Monday —and often times the Lady Pirates’ three-ball attempts were wide open.

Wheelersburg attempted 29 threes, so while their 34-percent from beyond the arc might not sound the greatest, the 30 points off those 10 certainly does.

Keeney connected for the opening three followed by Kallner, as Keeney’s second splash from distance made it 13-4 halfway through the first period.

In the second stanza, Darnell drained one at the five-minute mark to immediately answer Howell hitting hers only 40 seconds earlier, as Oak Hill was never within eight the remainder of the way.

In fact, Keeney’s corner-pocket shot secured a double-digit advantage at 25-14, as the Lady Pirates never allowed their lead to dip into single digits for the final 19 minutes and 40 seconds.

Keeney’s fourth three made it 32-18 for the Lady Pirates’ largest first-half margin with 1:23 remaining, as the five-foot nine-inch sophomore scored 14 of her 19 in the opening half.

But Wheelersburg wasn’t done dialing in from deep.

Keeney, from the top of the key on the opening possession of the third quarter, connected again —before three more from Darnell upped the advantage to the Lady Pirates’ largest margin each time (40-23, 43-23 and 46-25).

Wheelersburg held a commanding 50-32 advantage following the third frame, as both squads scored eight points in the fourth for the 58-40 final score.

Spradlin said the Lady Pirates’ rebounding ability, especially offensively, allowed for extra opportunities behind the three-point line.

Some of the rebounds went long, where Wheelersburg’s guards —Lani Irwin and Lauren Jolly —just gathered up the ball and kicked out to either Keeney, Kallner or Darnell.

Wheelersburg outrebounded Oak Hill 12-5 in the first quarter alone to set the tone, and had some possessions of two, three or even four offensive boards.

“We don’t have a true post player, so we try to rebound with our speed and our athleticism,” said Spradlin. “We get Lani (Irwin) and Lauren (Jolly) gravitating to the ball a lot of times. And when they get it, they are really good about getting it out to open shooters. Alaina made a couple of hers off those. “

Macee Eaton netted nine points for the Lady Pirates on two field goals and 5-of-6 free throws, while Kallner, Jolly, Irwin, Makenna Walker and Lexie Rucker recorded a two-point goal apiece.

Brittani Wolfenbarker, by splitting a pair of fourth-quarter foul shots, rounded out the Wheelersburg scoring.

Caitlyn Brisker, the Lady Oaks’ senior standout, bagged a team-high 18 points on four total field goals and 9-of-11 free throws.

She sank a three-pointer in the second quarter, as all 18 of her markers came over the final three periods.

Spradlin said it was important for the Lady Pirates not to let Brisker get going early.

“She (Brisker) is a tough matchup. She is so physical and so athletic. We try to put different people on her, and when she is knocking down that three, it makes her even harder to guard,” he said. “Doug (Hale) is putting her in positions to where she can get to the basket with some of the ball-screens. I thought we did a pretty good job, for the most part, to holding her to 18 and them to 40.”

Oak Hill, which only played seven players and was without Peyton Miller once again with a broken nose, had eight points on four field goals from Chloe Chambers — and six first-quarter baskets by Olivia Clarkson for six.

Oak Hill hosts Waverly on Thursday, while Wheelersburg welcomes Northwest with first-place in the SOC II at stake.

The Lady Mohawks have won several close encounters on the road —including at Oak Hill, Waverly and Minford.

Northwest will be taller and longer than the Lady Pirates, so first and foremost —Spradlin said —rebounding will be a focus.

“We’re going to have to rebound the ball really well, and not just in stretches like we did tonight, to compensate for their length and athleticism,” he said. “Hopefully, we get some great efforts and everybody hitting on all cylinders offensively on the same night.”

Indeed, Thursday’s affair is a “big” game — as the Lady Pirates avoided the Lady Oaks’ “trap” on Monday night.

“Northwest has the one loss to us, they’ve won a lot of close ballgames, and I expect Thursday to be a close ballgame,” said Spradlin. “Two good teams fighting for first-place in the conference. What else can you ask for?”

* * *

Oak Hill 8 15 9 8 — 40

Wheelersburg 15 19 16 8 — 58

OAK HILL 40 (10-7, 7-5 SOC II)

Baylee Howell 1 0-0 3, Tamron McCain 0 1-2 1, Chloe Chambers 4 0-0 8, Caitlyn Brisker 4 9-11 18, Baylee Howard 0 0-0 0, Brooke Howard 1 2-2 4, Olivia Clarkson 3 0-0 6; TOTALS 13 12-15 40; Three-point goals: 2 (Baylee Howell and Caitlyn Brisker 1 apiece)

WHEELERSBURG 58 (14-1, 11-0 SOC II)

Lauren Jolly 1 0-0 2, Brittani Wolfenbarker 0 1-2 1, Lani Irwin 1 0-0 2, Alaina Keeney 7 0-0 19, Ellie Kallner 2 0-1 5, Kaylee Darnell 5 2-4 16, Makenna Walker 1 0-0 2, Lexie Walker 1 0-0 2, Macee Eaton 2 5-6 9; TOTALS 20 8-13 58; Three-point goals: 10 (Alaina Keeney 5, Kaylee Darnell 4, Ellie Kallner 1)


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Brittani Wolfenbarker-10000
Lani Irwin-20000
Lexie Rucker-20000
Makenna Walker-20000
Macee Eaton-90000
Kaylee Darnell-160000
Alaina Keeney-190000
Ellie Kallner-50000
Lauren Jolly-20000
 Total 580000

Oak Hill

# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Tamron McCain-10000
Chloe Chambers-80000
Brooke Howard-40000
Caitlyn Brisker2020180000
Baylee Howell-30000
Peyton Miller-00000
Olivia Clarkson-60000
 Total 400000


Date League Season
January 20, 2020 SEO 2019-20



‘Burg hits 11 3s in rout of Vikings


Vinton County47Loss

‘Burg hits 11 3s in rout of Vikings

WHEELERSBURG — What a difference a week, and even a year, makes.

Only a week ago in the Lady Pirates’ loss at Ironton, Wheelersburg went 3-of-20 from three-point range en route to falling 46-43 — as exactly a year ago Vinton County erupted for 14 threes in its runaway victory over the visiting Lady Pirates.

However, in Saturday night’s non-league return tilt against the visiting Lady Vikings, Wheelersburg went off for its own measure of revenge against Vinton County.

That’s because the Lady Pirates pumped in 11 three-point goals —five in the opening half and six in the red-hot third quarter —as Wheelersburg rebounded nicely with an important, and impressive, 64-47 win over Vinton County at an amped-up Wheelersburg High School.

The Lady Pirates — a Division III Southeastern Ohio power — are now 10-1, while the talented and highly-touted Division II Lady Vikings fell to 10-2.

Vinton County’s lone loss, prior to Saturday night, was a 77-40 setback at Division I powerhouse Newark.

But like that contest for the Lady Vikings, Wheelersburg was making shots —three-pointers to be exact —while Vinton County was not.

The Lady Pirates’ 11 made-threes were on 16 attempts — which is a sizzling 69-percent when translated to commonly-used percentages.

Wheelersburg’s five first-half threes spearheaded it to a pair of five-point leads at 20-15 and 25-20, as the Lady Pirates’ largest first-half advantage stood as its halftime edge of 29-22.

In the third quarter, Wheelersburg went near-nuclear on the Lady Vikings, splashing six trifectas on seven attempts over the eight-minute canto.

The Lady Pirates ballooned their advantage to 51-29 with 1:42 remaining, and — despite Vinton County being in the free-throw bonus situation for the entire fourth period — Wheelersburg withstood the Lady Vikings’ comeback bid over the final nine-and-a-half minutes.

Obviously, and as Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin discussed, Saturday night was all about the Lady Pirates putting up three-pointers —and making them.

That was, of course, something they didn’t do at Ironton (9-1).

“The story of the game was we made 11 3s. It’s just hard for a team to overcome that. They (Lady Vikings) did it to us last year. We had five kids hit them, and when we get that good ball movement and those kids hitting those open shots, it’s all great,” said Spradlin. “When shots go in, everything else looks good. We’re a perimeter team, and making 3-of-20 from the arc isn’t good enough to beat good teams. I didn’t know we were going to make 11 like we did tonight, but it’s what we have to do to be successful. We have to take those shots when we are open. We had a lot of kids step up and play really hard, and I thought the ball movement was really good.”

Kaylee Darnell and Ellie Kallner canned three threes, Alaina Keeney and Brittani Wolfenbarker bagged two apiece, and Makenna Walker hit hers with three-and-a-half minutes remaining in the third for a 46-28 Wheelersburg lead.

Darnell, as she often does, dropped in a game-high in points —22 to be exact on seven total field goals and 5-of-6 free throws.

It was the fifth game this season in which the junior and returning first-team all-Southeast District Division III honoree has scored at least 21 points —and the seventh affair in which she has scored at least 15.

Not to be outdone was the fellow junior Kallner, who chipped in five field goals and 5-of-9 fourth-quarter free throws for 18 points.

Keeney connected on two deuces and two treys for 10 points —as her triples got the Lady Pirates on the board at 5-3 and ahead for good at 17-15.

The Lady Pirates, following the fifth lead change, never trailed for the final 21 minutes and 15 seconds —as there was one tie at 20-20 just two minutes before halftime.

But while Wheelersburg was making its shots, which included 9-of-20 from inside the arc for 45-percent towards 20-of-36 overall for 56-percent, the Lady Vikings of head coach Rod Bentley were not.

Vinton County, often “a live-by or die-by” the three-ball club, could only account for two threes on 18 attempts —which is only an ice-cold 11-percent.

The Lady Vikings, whose only threes were in the third quarter by Tegan Bartoe at the 4:53 mark and Rylee Ousley with exactly a minute-and-a-half remaining, shot just 30-percent on 14-of-47.

It’s a different contest, and outcome, of course when you’re not making shots.

“Vinton County has a ton of weapons, and we saw it last year when they hit 14 threes against us in their gym. They made just two tonight and I don’t know how many they took, but they just struggled to make those like we did at Ironton,” said Spradlin.

Four Lady Vikings reached double figures, paced by junior Morgan Bentley, the coach’s daughter and team’s top player.

Bentley is a frontrunner for the Southeast District Division II Player of the Year honor, and led the Lady Vikings with 15 points.

She, Cameron Zinn (12 points) and Josie Ousley (10 points) finished with four field goals apiece, as Bentley was 7-of-13 at the line — while Zinn was 4-of-5 and Ousley 2-of-4.

Bartoe was 3-of-6 at the stripe, while Lacie Williams was 1-of-4 to round out the Lady Vikings’ scoring.

But when Vinton County is making many more free throws (17) than three-point goals (two), despite owning a size advantage over Wheelersburg, that’s a credit to the Lady Pirates’ defense for buckling down and bowing up.

Spradlin said the physicality of which Ironton played with in turn aided the hosts on Saturday.

“Honestly, in a lot of ways, I think the Ironton game really helped us with this game tonight. It was very similar as far as how physical it was. Coach Bentley’s daughter (Morgan Bentley) can go inside-out and they have other kids that drive the lane really hard. We tried to battle them and make it as tough as we could. We really competed hard on the glass,” said the coach. “It’s a tough matchup for us with their size advantage and with the strength that they have. I thought all of our kids that played played really hard.”

Playing hard, and making threes.

The Lady Vikings —with three baskets by Ousley in the opening four minutes and 43 seconds — raced out to leads of 5-0 and 7-3, sandwiched around Keeney’s first three.

But Wheelersburg went ahead 10-9 on the first of Wolfenbarker’s two triples at the 1:17 mark of the first quarter —and only trailed 11-10 and 15-14 following that.

From there, Keeney and Kallner connected on back-to-back threes for a 20-15 advantage — followed almost four full minutes later by Darnell’s first three with 52 seconds left before halftime.

In the third quarter, Darnell needed only one possession for her second trey and a double-digit advantage at 32-22, as Kallner’s second three made it 35-23 only a minute and three seconds in.

The Lady Pirates led by at least 10 points for the final 14 minutes and 50 seconds, as a Darnell drive made it 37-25 at the 6:05 point.

Kallner, Darnell, Walker and Wolfenbarker then drained a three apiece in a matter of two minutes and 10 seconds, as Kallner converted a two-pointer to make it 51-29 at the 1:42 mark.

The Lady Vikings scored the final seven points of the period, but got no closer than 13 points at 52-39 over the final six minutes and five seconds —and the final 11 minutes and 55 seconds.

In the fourth quarter, Kallner converted her 5-of-9 free throws, Darnell split a pair of foul shots, and Macee Eaton added a freebie.

Wheelersburg was 13-of-20 at the free-throw line, including a pair of makes by Walker and Darnell in the second stanza —and a pair of tosses by Darnell in the first.

Speaking of the first, Vinton County suffered a serious injury loss late in the quarter, when junior point guard Myriah Davis —who missed all of last season except two games and the first three minutes of another with an ACL tear —went down with the same injured knee.

She did not return to the game — only to the bench for the final three quarters.

Still, no matter who was on the court, it was all about Wheelersburg making shots on Saturday night.

“It’s just a huge win to beat a Division II team that is a district championship-caliber club,” said Spradlin. “We said we wanted to play good competition, and it’s good to see our kids respond.”

The Lady Pirates — the defending Southern Ohio Conference Division II champions and current league leaders again at 7-0 —host South Webster on Monday night to complete the first-round of SOC II play.

* * *

Vinton County 11 11 14 11 —47

Wheelersburg 10 19 22 13 — 64


Zoey Kiefer 0 0-0 0, Emily Kight 0 0-0 0, Myriah Davis 0 0-0 0, Josie Ousley 4 2-4 10, Tegan Bartoe 1 3-6 6, Morgan Bentley 4 7-3 15, Lydia Lenegar 0 0-0 0, Lacie Williams 0 1-4 1, Cameron Zinn 4 4-5 12, Rylee Ousley 1 0-0 3; TOTALS 14 17-32 47; Three-point goals: 2 (Tegan Bartoe and Rylee Ousely 1 apiece)


Lauren Jolly 0 0-0 0, Madison Whittaker 0 0-0 0, Brittani Wolfenbarker 2 0-0 6, Lani Irwin 0 0-0 0, Alaina Keeney 4 0-0 10, Ellie Kallner 5 5-9 18, Kaylee Darnell 7 5-6 22, McKenna Walker 1 2-2 5, Lexie Rucker 0 0-0 0, Macee Eaton 1 1-3 3; TOTALS 20 13-20 64; Three-point goals: 11 (Ellie Kallner and Kaylee Darnell 3 apiece, Brittani Wolfenbarker and Alaina Keeney 2 apiece, McKenna Walker 1)



Vinton County



Date League Season
January 4, 2020 SEO 2019-20



Ironton over Wheelersburg slugfest



Ironton hands Lady Pirates first loss

Fighting Tigers prevail 46-43

By Paul Boggs

Photo’s by Kent Sanborn

IRONTON — Unfortunately for the Lady Pirates, the threes just weren’t falling on

Monday night like New Year’s party confetti.

As a result, Wheelersburg won’t be turning the calendar into 2020 as an undefeated

girls basketball team.

That’s because, after attempting 20 three-point shots but making just three — and

overcome by Ironton’s size, strength and length —

the Lady Pirates suffered their first loss

of the season with a narrow 46-43 defeat inside Ironton High School’s Conley Center.

Wheelersburg is now 8-1, as the Lady Pirates played their first game since Dec. 19

—after opening the season with eight games over two-and-a-half weeks.

Ironton, meanwhile, raised its record to 9-1 — with its only loss coming at Ohio Valley

Conference rival Coal Grove by a single point (52-51) in overtime.

The host Lady Fighting Tigers took to the floor just a week ago, so any “rust” from the

often-disjointed Christmas holiday schedule seemed to have less impact upon them.

In a defensive slugfest, and at a pace better suited for the half-court, the usually three-point

proficient Lady Pirates shot just 15-percent from distance —and could never get one to

fall for them at a crucial time.

None more critical than in the second half, as Wheelersburg made all three of its threes

in the first 16 minutes.

They missed all eight in the final two quarters, including six in the final stanza — with the

best look being by Kaylee Darnell with a minute-and-a-half remaining.

“We were frustrated offensively. Just with the physicality and with the way they were

guarding Kaylee (Darnell),” said Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin. “We took

some quick shots and forced some bad shots because we were trying to make a

play and get back in the game quickly. I felt like we had the mentality, especially

early, that we had to score in eight seconds. There are a lot of things we can learn

from this game, because Ironton is very good and well-coached.”

“We came up with some big defensive stops,” said Ironton coach Doug Graham.

“They (Pirates) are a perimeter-oriented team. They play five guards and they bring somebody in off the bench

who is a guard. That’s their bread-and-butter. They are going to shoot on the

perimeter, they are going to run that dribble-drive and dribble-handoff and try to catch you sleeping and helping too much in the paint. They like

to kick it out for a step-in three. If you let them do that, they are dangerous

and can score 60 or 70 points.”

Ironton, with its height anchored by five-foot, 10-inch Lexie Arden and six-foot tall Samantha LaFon, indeed impacted the Lady Pirates’ perimeter shooting.

Ironton also played without guard Riley Schreck, who was out with an injured knee.

Wheelersburg shot 34-percent on 17-of-50, as the Lady Fighting Tigers limited Darnell — the Lady Pirates’ leading

scorer — to just eight points on 3-of-10 from the field.

“Several girls did a good job on her (Darnell). She is a tremendous player

and one of the best in the area. To hold her to eight points is a testament

to our defense,” said Graham. “Elli Williams was really tough on her for a

large part of the game. And Lexie (Arden) and Samantha (LaFon), with

their size and their athletic ability and their basketball ability, that really helped us tonight.”

But while Wheelersburg wasn’t making threes, Ironton left the door open

for the Lady Pirates by not making foul shots.

As the Fighting Tigers missed four out of five free throws over the final

five minutes, their 45-38 advantage evaporated into a 45-42 edge with

3.4 seconds left.

Rather than allow a possible made triple, the Fighting Tigers decided

to foul Darnell — who shot the one-and-one bonus situation, but had

to make the first but intentionally miss t

he second to keep the Lady Pirates’ possession for the tie or even the win.

Darnell drained the first for the 45-43 deficit, and her second

shot missed — but Arden amounted her

seventh and final rebound, and was fouled with 2.1 tics showing for

the Lady Pirates’ 10th team foul.

Arden did miss on the first of the double-bonus foul shots, but did sink

the the all-important second freebie — making it 46-43.

Ellie Kallner, who paced the Lady Pirates and all scorers with 14 points

including nine in the second quarter, launched a desperation three-quarters

court shot which fell short.

The Lady Fighting Tigers led from tipoff to final buzzer, holding a seven-point

lead on four occasions (8-1, 13-6, 16-9 and 45-38) — as the contest was

tied four times (16-16, 21-21, 23-23 and 37-37) as well.

“We have to start better. I thought we played hard, but we have to play better.

You fall behind against a good team, and usually the story is you work so

hard to try and catch up. That’s what we had to do,” said Spradlin.

“I am proud of the way we played and how we competed. But you

can’t put yourself in those situations.”

“Good teams are going make runs and Wheelersburg wasn’t going

to roll over and get beat by 20 points. Wheelersburg is a good team,

and was going to fight back from seven points down. To my girls’ credit,

we withstood some of their punches and extended the lead again,” said Graham.

Wheelersburg battled back from each seven-point deficit — relying on first-half three-pointers from Kallner, Lani Irwin and Makenna Walker — but Ironton answered with first-half trifectas from Kirsten Williams, Evan Williams, Elli Williams and Arden.

Kirsten Williams rained in two treys, as Ironton ended up making

5-of-12 from three-point range in the opening half —

part of 5-of-15 for 33-percent for the entire game.

In the second half, the Fighting Tigers maintained their lead by going 8-of-13

at the foul line — combined with tough underneath baskets

by LaFon, either on offensive putbacks or by her simply clearing out space for herself.

LaFon, who was just 2-of-7 in the first half with three fouls, finished with a double-double 13 points and a dozen rebounds — making five field goals and 3-of-4 foul shots.

Arden added 10 points on three field goals and 3-of-5 foul shots —

as she, Elli Williams and Lydia Hannan had seven rebounds apiece.

Ironton outrebounded Wheelersburg 35-26, as Alaina Keeney with

eight and Kallner with seven were the top boarders for the Lady Pirates.

“We finished the defensive possessions better by rebounding better

in the second half as opposed to the first,” said Graham.

“We weren’t getting them off the floor in the first half. I bet they had five-to-seven offensive rebounds, so that is something we wanted to correct

in the second.”

Kallner collected six total field goals and converted a fourth-quarter

free throw, as Keeney chipped in 10 points on four field goals and

2-of-2 second-stanza foul shots.

Her driving basket tied it at 37-37 with 54 seconds remaining in the

third, but Ironton opened the first five minutes of the fourth with an

8-1 run — making it a seven-point cushion for the final time at 45-38.

The Lady Pirates return to the road, and return to

Southern Ohio Conference Division II action, on Thursday night at Pike Eastern.

Wheelersburg — the defending division champion — continues

to lead the league at 6-0.

The loss at Ironton, Spradlin said, is a lesson learned.

“You either win or you learn,” he said. “The fight was good and the energy

was good, but we have to find a way to execute better.”

Ironton, on the other hand, has a happier New Year — with its victory over

the now one-loss Lady Pirates.

“These girls come in and practice hard. I’m very proud of the way they

played this game tonight,” said Graham. “It was a physical game, it was

a well-played game and all-around a great team effort.

Ironton next faces Fairland in the OVC on Monday night.

* * *

Wheelersburg 9 14 14 6 — 43

Ironton 16 10 13 7— 46


Lauren Jolly 1 1-2 3, Brittani Wolfenbarker 0 0-0 0, Lani Irwin 1 0-0 3, Alaina Keeney 4 2-2 10, Ellie Kallner 6 1-4 14, Kaylee Darnell 3 2-3 8, Makenna Walker 2 0-0 5; TOTALS 17 6-11 43; Three-point goals: 3 (Lani Irwin, Ellie Kallner and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)

IRONTON 46 (9-1)

Samantha LaFon 5 3-4 13, Lydia Hannan 1 3-4 5, Elli Williams 2 0-0 5, Kameron Arden 0 0-0 0, Kirsten Williams 2 0-0 6, Evan Williams 3 0-1 7, Lexie Arden 3 3-5 10; TOTALS 16 9-14 46; Three-point goals: 5 (Kirsten Williams 2, Elli Williams, Evan Williams and Lexie Arden 1 apiece)



# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Kameren Arden-00000
Samantha LaFon-130000
Ellie Williams-50000
Lydia Hannan-50000
Kristen Williams-60000
Evan Williams-70000
Lexi Arden-100000
 Total 460000


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Kaylee Darnell-80000
Lani Irwin-30000
Brittani Wolfenbarker-00000
Makenna Walker-50000
Ellie Kallner-140000
Alaina Keeney-100000
Lauren Jolly-30000
 Total 430000


Date League Season
December 30, 2019 SEO 2019-20



Lady Pirates cage Tigers to stay perfect



Lady Pirates cage Tigers to stay perfect

‘Burg moves to 8-0 with win over Waverly

By Paul Boggs


WHEELERSBURG — Simply put, there was little visiting Waverly could do — and did.

But don’t blame the Lady Tigers here — not when Wheelersburg’s defense was in definite lockdown mode, or as Kaylee Darnell was torching the Lady Tigers’ 2-3 zone.

The host Lady Pirates put the clamps on Waverly, Darnell almost outscored the Lady Tigers by herself, and undefeated Wheelersburg rolled to another Southern Ohio Conference Division II victory on Thursday night by a final count of 56-25.

With the win, the Lady Pirates pushed their perfect record to 8-0 — and to 6-0 and still atop the SOC II.

Wheelersburg, the defending division champion which defeated Minford 44-37 on Monday night for its closest encounter of the season so far, remains one game ahead of the Northwest Lady Mohawks (7-1, 5-1 SOC II) in the conference standings.

Northwest was idle on Thursday with the SOC II’s rotating weekly bye, while Waverly fell to 3-2 — part of 5-2 overall.

For the talented and highly-touted Lady Pirates, most observers thought the senior-less Lady Tigers could possibly pose a challenge — but by halftime in which Waverly scored just two second-period points, those thoughts were long gone.

That’s because the Tigers, after being tied 5-5 with two-and-a-half minutes remaining in the opening quarter, tallied just four points over the first half’s final 10-and-a-half minutes — and the only two of the second quarter with six minutes remaining.

Thus, the Lady Pirates extended a 13-7 advantage after the opening quarter to 28-9 at halftime — which only increased to 45-16 with 28 seconds showing in the third frame.

While Waverly scored 10 points in the third, it only scored six more in the fourth — as the Lady Pirates played strictly reserve-role players over the final eight minutes.

Wheelersburg’s largest lead stood at 56-23 with only a minute and 40 seconds remaining.

The Lady Pirate defense, once again, didn’t allow an opponent to reach 40 points for the sixth straight affair.

It was also Wheelersburg’s third bout of not allowing an opponent to score at least 28.

“Defensively, honestly, we were very good,” said Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin. “They run a lot of different sets, but I thought our kids did a good job of contesting and getting rebounds.”

While Wheelersburg was after Waverly with a traditional man-to-man defense, the Lady Tigers came out in the 2-3 zone.

After a minute and 45 seconds of passing the basketball around it, Ellie Kallner connected on a baseline jumper — before popping one of her two three-pointers.

Zoiee Smith
Current Team
SEO, All Time Leaders, SOC2
2018-19, 2019-20
Waverly standout Zoiee Smith, who paced the Lady Tigers with a dozen points including the club’s only three-pointer, scored the next five for the 5-5 tie — but that’s when Darnell started busting the zone, and the Lady Pirates’ pullaway began.

Darnell went off for 23 points for the second time this season — as her first was against Northwest when Wheelersburg scored 44.

On Thursday, she netted nine field goals including five threes, as her back-to-back pair late in the first made it 11-5 with a minute and five seconds to go.

She scored her first deuce with time winding down at the end of the opener, and made it 16-7 with her third three-pointer only 45 seconds into the second stanza.

After Carli Knight notched a field goal for Waverly’s only period points at the 5:58 mark, Wheelersburg reeled off the final dozen points over the final five minutes — with Darnell drilling two more treys to make it 21-9 and 28-9.

For the junior Darnell — who is closing in on the 1,000-point total for her career — she scored at least 15 points for already the fifth time this year, at least 19 markers for the fourth time, and at least 21 for the third game.

She scored three more buckets in the third quarter, and sat out the entire fourth.

Darnell does run the Lady Pirates’ point position, but did attack the zone and found holes in it — and also found spots for set shots.

“There’s an inside to the zone (defense) too, and you have to make sure the ball gets in there some, whether it is off a pass or dribble. And obviously, we shot the ball really well, with Kaylee (Darnell) doing most of it. I think the first possession lasted a long time, but once we settled in, we moved the ball well and got it to an open person,” said Spradlin. “It’s a balance, and we share the ball well with good ball movement.”

But other Lady Pirates got in on the act, as they combined for 11 three-pointers, including one by Alaina Keeney that made it 24-9 — as her third-period three-ball upped it to 33-13.

Keeney and Kallner added eight points apiece, as Kallner — coming back from two first-quarter fouls and not playing in the entire second period — splashed her second trifecta halfway thru the third.

In fact, she was fouled on the shot, but missed the free throw for the extremely rare four-point play.

Makenna Walker with a three for Wheelersburg made it 45-16, as Smith promptly answered for the Lady Tigers.

Annie Coriell, a fellow freshman for the Lady Pirates along with Walker, connected on the final three with 1:40 remaining.

Coriell was one of 10 Lady Pirates, and four freshmen, to dent the scoring column — as Madison Whittaker made her varsity debut and scored three points as well, including the team’s only made free throw on five attempts.

Another freshman, Macee Eaton, added a second-quarter field goal — as did sophomores Lindsey Heimbach and Isabella Hamilton in the fourth and senior Brittani Wolfenbarker for the final points of the third.

Spradlin said the lopsided score allowed his younger Pirates more playing time, and ability to stretch their bench before some more big games coming up.

“When you have not just young kids, but new kids, in key positions, it just takes time. We are just now starting to scratch the surface of what we can be, both offensively and defensively. We have a lot of kids that have talent, it’s just making sure that everybody fits together,” he said. “I think we have come a long way in eight games, and our bench has developed. And our older kids — Kaylee and Ellie (Kallner) — have settled into that leadership role. It’s not about where we are, it’s where we want to be. We still have a lot of things that we can do better.”

Although, on Thursday night, there was little Waverly could do — and did — against the red-hot Lady Pirates.

Wheelersburg was actually playing its eighth game on Thursday — in a span of 18 days due to not playing its first until Dec. 2.

The Lady Pirates play at another one-loss squad for their next tilt — at Ironton on Monday, Dec. 30.

“We started a week late, so we could use a little break before Ironton in 10 days. That’s going to be a tough task,” said Spradlin. “They are big, they are physical and they guard.”

* * *

Waverly 7 2 10 6— 25

Wheelersburg 13 15 19 9— 56

WAVERLY 25 (5-2, 3-2 SOC II)

Carli Knight 2 0-0 4, Michaela Rhoads 0 0-1 0, Raelynn Dale 0 0-0 0, Zoiee Smith 5 1-4 12, Paige Carter 0 0-0 0, Lydia Brown 2 1-4 5, Delaney Tackett 0 0-0 0, Sara Thompson 1 0-0 2, Kelli Stewart 0 0-0 0, Ryane Bond 1 0-0 2; TOTALS 11 2-9 25; Three-point goals: 1 (Zoiee Smith 1)


Annie Coriell 1 0-0 3, Lauren Jolly 0 0-0 0, Madison Whittaker 1 1-2 3, Brynley Preston 0 0-0 0, Brittani Wolfenbarker 1 0-0 2, Lani Irwin 0 0-0 0, Alaina Keeney 3 0-0 8, Isabella Hamilton 1 0-0 2, Ellie Kallner 3 0-1 8, Kaylee Darnell 9 0-0 23, Lindsey Heimbach 1 0-0 2, Makenna Walker 1 0-0 3, Lexie Rucker 0 0-0 0, Macee Eaton 1 0-0 2; TOTALS 22 1-5 56; Three-point goals: 11 (Kaylee Darnell 5, Alaina Keeney and Ellie Kallner 2 apiece, Annie Coriell and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Alaina Keeney-80000
Ellie Kallner-80000
Isabella Hamilton-20000
Kaylee Darnell -230000
Lauren Jolly-00000
Lindsey Heimbach-20000
Annie Coriell-30000
Madison Whittaker-30000
Brynley Preston-00000
Brittani Wolfenbarker-20000
Lani Irwin-00000
Lexie Rucker-00000
Makenna Walker-30000
Macee Eaton-20000
 Total 560000


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Carli Knight-40000
Michaela Rhoads-00000
Lydia Brown-50000
Raelynn Dale-00000
Delaney Tackett-00000
Zoiee Smith-120000
Sarah Thompson-20000
Paige Carter-00000
Kelli Stewart-00000
Ryane Bond-20000
 Total 250000


Date League Season
December 19, 2019 SEO 2019-20



Burg wins 44-35 at Northwest in SOC II



Lady Pirates road show success

‘Burg wins 44-35 at Northwest in SOC II

By Paul Boggs



McDERMOTT — While Lauren Jolly was the birthday girl, fellow Wheelersburg junior Kaylee Darnell was the Lady Pirates’ focal point.

That’s because Darnell, the Lady Pirates’ all-Southeast District Division III first-team selection last season, delivered big baskets — and all the small things — during the visiting Lady Pirates’ hard-fought 44-35 victory over the Northwest Lady Mohawks on Thursday night.

Both teams took the floor undefeated, both overall and in the Southern Ohio Conference Division II, but it’s the defending division champion Lady Pirates entering mid-December still unbeaten.

Wheelersburg, which had the opening-night bye in the SOC II’s double round-robin schedule, raised its record to 5-0 — and to 4-0 and atop the league.

The young Lady Mohawks (5-1) suffered their initial loss in six tries, and are now 4-1 in the SOC II.

Wheelersburg won the game, in truth, on the strength of two runs — a seven-point spurt in the final two-and-a-half minutes of the second quarter followed by back-to-back-to-back-to-back three-point goals in the third frame for what was Wheelersburg’s largest advantage.

While it definitely wasn’t always a work of art offensively, the Lady Pirates did the job defensively — forcing 11 first-half turnovers and stymieing the Lady Mohawks to just 14 points on six field goals and two made free throws.

Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin said that Northwest, despite its youth, “presents so many challenges” — but that his Lady Pirates defended the Lady Mohawks well throughout.

“They have athleticism, they have size, they have length, but I thought our kids did a pretty good job against them,” he said. “We told them they can’t fall asleep. They run some of the dribble-drive that we do. We guarded better as the game went on and guarded well in the full-court. We tried to mix up a few things, whether it was man or zone, and just try to bother them and make them work harder.”

The contest went back and forth for the opening 13-and-a-half minutes, as there were seven lead changes and two ties — with the Mohawks holding leads of 2-0, 4-3, 8-6 and finally at 14-12.

After Ellie Kallner made a steal and Darnell finished with a layup and old-fashioned three-point play to make it 12-8, the Mohawks took their last lead on three consecutive baskets halfway through the second quarter — by Ava Jenkins, Reagan Lewis and finally Valerie Copas.

But the Pirates shut out the Mohawks for the final three minutes of the stanza, as Darnell — who scored five of Wheelersburg’s six first-period points including her three that made it 6-5 — put the Orange and Black back in front for the final 18-and-a-half minutes.

In the final 1:20 of the half, freshman Makenna Walker scored back-to-back buckets for the Lady Pirates off two Northwest turnovers, as her second score gave Wheelersburg a 19-14 advantage entering the break.

According to Northwest coach Dave Frantz, the game boiled down to the Lady Pirates making two runs on his Mohawks.

That was the first.

“That’s the most athletic team we’re going to play all year. All five starters and then girls off the bench, they are very quick and well-coached and one of the best teams in the area. But honestly, they had that run at the end of the first half and there in the third quarter. But I can’t say enough about my girls,” said Frantz. “We had a few missed assignments, but all in all we played well and right with them. Just a couple runs that hurt us.”

Spradlin said his Pirates left some points, and some plays, out on the court in the first half.

“At halftime, we talked about we had missed some opportunities. With this group, we have to learn to be a little bit patient. We were trying to drive the lane all the way to the lane every time. On some of those, you stop short and you kick the ball back out. We did that in the third quarter,” he said. “We needed to relax a little bit more, and coincidentally we hit some shots.”

Darnell was Wheelersburg’s spark-plug — going off for a game-high 23 points on four two-point goals, four three-point goals and perfect 3-of-3 at the foul line.

But besides scoring, she handled the basketball here or got a defensive rebound or tie-up there, making all the key plays — whether they show up on the stat sheet or not.

Spradlin spoke of his point person’s wizardry.

“Kaylee has played a ton of ball at all kinds of different levels. Her instincts are what are so good about her. I thought she made a lot of good decisions tonight. She was in the right spot helping us a lot defensively and especially offensively,” said the coach. “She had to work, but she does a lot of good things. She is a catalyst with the ball. She makes people around her a lot better and we try to play off of her.”

Kierah Potts, the lone Lady Mohawk senior, posted a three-point play just 27 seconds into the second half — but Northwest never got closer.

Instead, over the next four minutes until the 3:20 mark, the Lady Pirates popped four three-point goals to make it 31-17 — as back-to-back bombs by Darnell, one by Kallner and another by Walker made it seem like a tidal wave hit.

Kallner converted a pair of free throws for the final Pirate points of the period, as Darnell scored two fourth-frame field goals — along with a pair of foul shots.

Wheelersburg went 5-of-6 from the line in the last quarter, part of 10-of-15 for the entire game.

Alaina Keeney and Macee Eaton added two freebies apiece along with a field goal, as Lani Irwin split a pair in the opening period.

“Offensively, we’re just trying to get better. We still don’t know when to attack, we miss some opportunities, we force some opportunities at times. In the first half tonight, we dribbled so much, and it wasn’t really with a lot of purpose, it was just to dribble. We cut down on some of that,” said Spradlin. “We’re still learning, and those are things that just take time and we have to be patient with them. We get stagnant a lot, but hopefully we will start taking some of those moments out of the game.”

Copas connected on Northwest’s only three-pointer at the two-minute mark of the third to make it 31-22, as its deficit was never larger than a dozen over the final 11 minutes — but never within fewer than five (38-33) points either.

Copas, who paced the Lady Mohawks with 13 points on five field goals and two free throws, converted to make it 38-33 with 1:50 remaining.

Jenkins and Haidyn Wamsley added eight points apiece on four baskets, as Kloe Montgomery split a pair of first-quarter free throws.

While not happy about the loss, Frantz praised his team’s effort against the highly-touted Lady Pirates.

“We’re not where we need to be, but we are getting there. I’m satisfied with the effort, but we have to keep working. In this league, EVERY night is a fight,” he said. “I’m super proud of these girls and they played their hearts out, but we have to keep getting better, and I believe these girls want to do that too.”

Spradlin, conversely, knows everybody is on the hunt for his Lady Pirates, who on Thursday night and spearheaded by Darnell delivered a birthday gift to Jolly.

That being another big road win in the SOC II — just three days after Wheelersburg won a critical conference clash at Oak Hill.

“Winning on the road in this league is so important. It was important at Oak Hill on Monday night for us, and now was even more important tonight,” said Spradlin. “I think our league is really good this year. If you don’t bring your best game each night in this league, you could walk away with a loss. But I think that’s a good thing. It prepares you well.”

* * *

Wheelersburg 6 13 14 11— 44

Northwest 8 6 10 11 — 35


Lauren Jolly 0 0-0 0, Brittani Wolfenbarker 0 0-0 0, Lani Irwin 0 1-2 1, Alaina Keeney 1 2-2 4, Isabella Hamilton 0 0-0 0, Ellie Kallner 1 2-2 5, Kaylee Darnell 8 3-3 23, Makenna Walker 3 0-2 7, Lexie Rucker 0 0-0 0, Macee Eaton 1 2-4 4; TOTALS 14 10-15 44; Three-point goals: 6 (Kaylee Darnell 4, Ellie Kallner and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)

NORTHWEST 35 (5-1, 4-1 SOC II)

Terah Webb 0 0-0 0, Valerie Copas 5 2-6 13, Haidyn Wamsley 4 0-0 8, Keirah Potts 1 1-1 3, Ava Jenkins 4 0-0 8, Reagan Lewis 1 0-0 2, Audrey Knittel 0 0-0 0, Kloe Montgomery 0 1-2 1; TOTALS 15 4-9 35; Three-point goals: 1 (Valerie Copas 1)


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Terah Webb-00000
Valeria Copas-130000
Haidyn Wamsley-80000
Keirah Potts-30000
Ava Jenkins-80000
Reagan Lewis-20000
Audrey Knittel-00000
Kloe Montgomery-10000
 Total 350000


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Lauren Jolly-00000
Brittani Wolfenbarker-00000
Lani Irwin-10000
Alaina Keeney-40000
Ellie Kallner-50000
Kaylee Darnell -230000
Isabella Hamilton-00000
Makenna Walker-70000
Lexie Rucker-00000
Macee Eaton-40000
 Total 440000


Date League Season
December 12, 2019 SEO 2019-20



Burg burns Lady Oaks


Oak Hill34Loss

‘Burg burns Lady Oaks

Wheelersburg wins at Oak Hill 49-34

By Paul Boggs


OAK HILL — Had this been a game of pool, the Lady Pirates put the three-ball in from the corner pocket.

That’s because of visiting Wheelersburg’s eight three-point goals, the Lady Pirates rained in a half-dozen from the court’s corners — and also locked down defensively on the Oak Hill Lady Oaks en route to a key 49-34 Southern Ohio Conference Division II girls basketball victory on Monday night.

Indeed, while Wheelersburg made shots — especially from beyond the three-point arc — the Lady Oaks’ offense only reached double figures for the first quarter, as the Lady Pirates played supreme defense to in turn set up their offense.

But the biggest takeaway, naturally, was Wheelersburg — the defending division champion — winning at Oak Hill, the site of its only league loss last season by a 39-38 final.

Thus, the Lady Pirates exact a measure of revenge — but more importantly remain undefeated on this season so far at 4-0, and 3-0 in the SOC II.

Monday’s win also sets up a colossal early-season encounter of unbeatens on Thursday night, as Wheelersburg will invade Northwest to take on the also-undefeated Lady Mohawks (4-0, 3-0 SOC II).

That was, assuming, that Northwest played — and won — at West on Tuesday, as that Monday matchup was actually postponed a day.

Northwest won at Oak Hill 46-45 in the SOC II opener on Nov. 29 — that being a makeup contest itself in which the Lady Mohawks’ Reagan Lewis landed the game-winning basket with four seconds remaining.

The Lady Oaks, already, are now 2-3 — but perhaps more surprisingly are 2-2 in the league with both defeats coming at home.

Not surprisingly, though, that if Oak Hill and longtime and highly-successful head coach Doug Hale were to lose to anybody on the home court — it would be to the high-quality club Lady Pirates.

“We’re playing against a man (Hale) who has over 500 all-time, almost 600, wins. So he knows what he is doing and he is going to make your team really work for a win. And I don’t know how many times we’ve won here at Oak Hill,” said Wheelersburg coach Dusty Spradlin, in his 18th season leading the Lady Pirates. “Any time you get a road victory in this league, I feel like you’re accomplishing a lot. I’m really proud of everybody’s effort and we were good enough to get a win here tonight.”

In last season’s December meeting at Oak Hill, the score stood tied at 32-32 — before the Lady Oaks went off for seven straight with over four minutes remaining.

Former Wheelersburg standout Abbie Kallner canned back-to-back threes to make it 39-38 with 2:37 remaining, but the Lady Pirates — despite having the ball for the remaining two-and-a-half minutes — couldn’t score.

What a difference a year makes on the exact same floor.

On Monday, after three fourth-quarter threes by the Lady Pirates put them ahead 49-28 with 4:44 to play, the Lady Oaks amounted a pair of baskets by Olivia Clarkson — sandwiched around one by Caitlyn Brisker over the next two-and-a-half minutes.

But over the final 2:15, all Wheelersburg did was dribble, pass, cut and run the three-man weave — and run out the clock as Oak Hill did not foul behind by 15 (49-34).

The Lady Pirates built their lead behind their defense, but also the three-point shot — as Ellie Kallner’s corner triple made it 42-28, before back-to-back corner trifectas by Alaina Keeney and Kallner again gave them their largest advanatage.

Through the first three quarters was more of the same, as Keeney connected on her first to make it 10-6 — before second-stanza threes by Lani Irwin (19-13) and Makenna Walker (27-15) and third-frame treys by Keeney (30-22) and Kallner (33-26) kept the Lady Pirates ahead at a workable distance.

Only Irwin’s off the wing with four-and-a-half minutes remaining in the second period and Keeney’s from the top of the key with 6:22 to play in the third were not from the corner.

Spradlin said his Lady Pirates passed the ball well, executed the offensive sets, and found the open shooters who hit from the side pockets.

“We’ve been preaching sharing the ball and we have kids who can play off the dribble. When you make shots, things look a whole lot better obviously,” he said. “I thought our kids did a good job of finding the open man, and it’s that fine line of balance when you pull on that three and when you don’t.”

Kallner and Keeney made three threes apiece, as Kallner added a first-half field goal and 3-of-3 free throws for 14 points.

Keeney also split a pair of first-quarter free throws to give the Lady Pirates the 7-6 lead — breaking the ties of 2-2, 4-4 and 6-6 and putting the Orange and Black in front for good.

Kaylee Darnell, the defensive stalwart who scored the Lady Pirates’ first six points and gave Wheelersburg the lead at 6-4, paced the guests with 15 points on three first-half field goals and 7-of-10 free throws.

“Our older kids, Ellie (Kallner), Kaylee (Darnell) and Alaina (Keeney) and even Lauren (Jolly) and Lani (Irwin), because they’ve been in our system, I can throw something at them and they do a good job of adjusting,” said Spradlin. “Those are kids that we trust.”

In the Lady Pirates you can trust their team defense, which made seven steals and forced a dozen first-half turnovers by the Lady Oaks.

“Turnovers have been our nemisis all year,” said Hale. “We made too many mistakes to beat a team the caliber of Wheelersburg.”

But even more glaring was the job Wheelersburg did on Oak Hill standout senior scorer Caitlyn Brisker, who only had a field goal in each quarter for eight points — one of which was a rebound putback in the second.

“When you can go out and throw three or four or even five different girls and stay in front of Cait Brisker, you’ve done a heck of a job defensively,” said Hale. “At times, I thought we adjusted to that with other ball-handlers and other strategies on offense, but we couldn’t stay consistent.”

Brisker, already a 1,000-point scorer for her decorated Lady Oak career and who went off for 30 against Northwest, was of course the Lady Pirates’ primary defensive focus.

However, aside from Clarkson’s game-high 16 points on six field goals and 4-of-7 free throws, no other Lady Oak — Chloe Chambers, Baylee Howard, Brooke Howard and Peyton Miller — amounted more than a field goal aside from a split of foul shots by Baylee Howard and Chambers.

In addition, Oak Hill did not hit a single three-pointer.

“Holding her (Brisker) to eight was absolutely huge. I don’t know how many nights you’re going to be able to do that. We forced some turnovers, but we have to know where Brisker is at all the time. She is such a phenomenal athlete and it’s just hard for people to match her athleticism,” said Spradlin.

Oak Hill trailed 12-11 following the opening quarter, but its point total kept dwindling with each passing canto — until it endured an epic scoring drought from the 2:07 mark of the third until the 3:45 juncture of the fourth.

Wheelersburg reeled off 14 unanswered over that same stretch to make it 37-28 after three quarters — and finally 49-28 before the Lady Oaks scored the final six points.

“We had cut the lead to four (30-26) in the third quarter, then they hit a two and get a turnover and a three, and within two possessions they are up nine,” said Hale. “We’re not as deep as they are, they got our legs tired and made threes in the fourth quarter. We were helping on the drives, stopping their penetration, and just didn’t recover in time (to defend three-point shooters).”

The Lady Pirates’ primary first-half run was a 15-4 spurt over the final 45 seconds of the first period and the opening 5:50 of the second.

After Darnell intercepted a pass and scored on a layup just 18 seconds into the second quarter, Oak Hill was never within a field goal again.

The Lady Oaks will face another undefeated on Thursday at Waverly, while Wheelersburg will return to the road for the major division affair at Northwest.

“We’re still learning each other and playing together, but we have kids that want to make plays for us,” said Spradlin. “We just have to take better care of the ball and rebound better, and those are two things we have to do well with Northwest’s length and height which we will face on Thursday.”

* * *

Wheelersburg 12 15 10 12 — 49

Oak Hill 11 9 8 6— 34


Lauren Jolly 0 0-0 0, Brittani Wolfenbarker 0 0-0 0, Lani Irwin 1 0-1 3, Alaina Keeney 3 1-2 10, Ellie Kallner 4 3-3 14, Kaylee Darnell 4 7-10 15, Makenna Walker 2 0-0 5, Macee Eaton 1 0-0 2; TOTALS 15 11-16 49; Three-point goals: 8 (Alaina Keeney and Ellie Kallner 3 apiece, Lani Irwin and Makenna Walker 1 apiece)

OAK HILL 34 (2-3, 2-2 SOC II)

Baylee Howell 0 0-0 0, Tamron McCain 0 0-0 0, Chloe Chambers 1 1-2 3, Caitlyn Brisker 4 0-0 8, Baylee Howard 1 1-2 3, Brooke Howard 1 0-0 2, Peyton Miller 1 0-0 2, Olivia Clarkson 6 4-7 16; TOTALS 14 6-11 34; Three-point goals: none

Oak Hill

# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Tamron McCain-00000
Chloe Chambers-30000
Brooke Howard-20000
Caitlyn Brisker202080000
Baylee Howell-30000
Peyton Miller-30000
Olivia Clarkson-160000
 Total 350000


# Player Class PTS REB AST STL BLK
Lauren Jolly-00000
Brittani Wolfenbarker-00000
Lani Irwin-30000
Alaina Keeney-100000
Ellie Kallner-140000
Kaylee Darnell-150000
Makenna Walker-50000
Macee Eaton-20000
Annie Coriell-00000
 Total 490000


Date League Season
December 9, 2019 SEO 2019-20


Oak Hill