By Rob Kiser
and Josh Brown
PLEASANT HILL — “Just a nice 40-point win,” Newton girls basketball coach Steve Fisher said with a wry smile after the Indians topped National Trail 65-26 in Cross County Conference action Thursday night to improve to 8-4 overall and 5-3 in the CCC.
And in the end, that is exactly what it turned into … but it took a little while to get there.
Newton went almost eight minutes without a field goal in one stretch of the first half and led just 18-13 with little over a minute to play in the opening half.
“We got caught in a problem we have had all year,” Fisher said. “Instead of their first look being to score, the other girls’ first look is always to Tatum (McBride). And that happened again tonight.”
Understandable, when you have a player with McBride’s talent and scoring ability. But Trail was focused on McBride from the start, something that has become common.
“I have seen that defense before,” Fisher said. “Remember, I had Matt Witt (when Fisher coached Bethel’s boys to a state championship). We have told the girls all year, you have to look to score. Just run the offense and the offense will come to Tatum (McBride).”
Newton’s first field goal of the second quarter was on a drive by Macy Flanary with 1:04 remaining in the half.
McBride scored off a steal and Michaela Kirk close the half with a 3 to make it 25-13.
“Macy (Flanary) has got to drive like that more often,” Fisher said. “I thought the three by Michaela (Kirk) was huge. It put us up 25-13.”
And Fisher felt like the light went on at halftime.
“I think the girls finally understood what we said about looking to score,” he said. “At least, I hope so. It looked like it in the third quarter.”
Anna Wolfe scored eight points in the quarter and McBride added seven.
And after holding National Trail without a field goal the last six minutes of the first half, Newton allowed the Blazers just one in the third quarter — outscoring them 23-3 to open a 48-16 lead. That completed a 30-3 run.
“I thought we just played really solid defense in the third quarter,” Fisher said. “We didn’t do any trapping. I think when we trap sometimes we get disconnected. That was just straight 1-2-2 from the school to the north (Covington, where Fisher was a longtime boys coach).”
The Indians coasted to the victory from there.
In the opening quarter, both teams started slow — with neither team scoring until a field goal by Trail’s Makena Laird with 5:05 remaining in the quarter.
But Mallory Dunlevy hit four goals to spark Newton to a 14-5 lead by the quarter’s end.
“Mallory (Dunlevy) had a great first quarter,” Fisher said. “But, then we had a tough second quarter until the end.”
McBride led a balanced Newton attack with 16 points, while Dunlevy netted 12.
Flanary and Brooke Deeter scored nine, Wolfe had eight and Michaela Kirk added seven.
Laird scored eight for Trail and Davlyn Werner added seven.
Newton will be back in action Jan. 18, hosting Twin Valley South — and Fisher would be just fine with another one of those 40-point wins.
ANSONIA — Covington junior Sammie Whiteman had a milestone night at Ansonia Thursday, scoring her 1,000th career point and leading the Buccaneers to a 67-51 Cross County Conference victory.
Whiteman led Covington (10-4, 6-2 CCC) with 27 points, scoring her 1,000th late in the third quarter to help the Buccs take a 47-33 lead into the final eight minutes. She then put the game away in the fourth quarter, scoring 12 of her points to help Covington pull away. She currently sits at 1,012 points and is the eighth Buccaneer girls basketball player to reach the milestone.
Jordan Crowell hit four 3s in the game and added 12 points, Tori Lyle scored all nine of her points in the first half and Makenzie Long chipped in seven points.
Covington hosts Bethel Saturday.
WEST MILTON — Milton-Union snapped a three-game losing streak and avenged an early-season loss Thursday night, holding off Southwestern Buckeye League Buckeye Division rival Madison 52-50 at home.
Beyonce Bobbitt came off the bench to deliver a career night, scoring a career-high 25 points and putting up her second double-double of the season with 11 rebounds to lead the Bulldogs (5-7, 3-3 SWBL Buckeye). Kristen Dickison added 10 points, eight rebounds, four assists and four steals, Morgan Nemeth added six points, five rebounds and five steals and Olivia Brown added six points, five rebounds and four blocked shots.
Milton-Union travels to Twin Valley South Saturday.
BRADFORD —Skipp Miller scored 18 points for Bradford Thursday night, but the rest of the Railroaders struggled in a 36-25 loss to Arcanum in Cross County Conference play.
Bradford (6-7, 3-5 CCC) travels to Houston Saturday.
Other scores: Lehman (5-6) 61, Upper Scioto Valley 39.
TROY — The Troy bowling teams opened head-to-head Greater Western Ohio Conference American North Division play Thursday with a sweep of Greenville at Troy Bowl, with the girls winning 2,476-1,599 and the boys winning 2,345-1,983.
For the girls (6-1, 6-0 GWOC American North), Jenna Stone led the way by rolling 222-245—467, Cassidy McMullen rolled 277-183—460, Alyssa Shilt rolled 212-203—415, A’leigha Smith rolled 184-204—388 and Stephanie Crider rolled 139-181—320.
For the boys (7-0, 6-0 GWOC American North), Carson Rogers rolled 188-256—444, Preston Jackson rolled 193-207—400, Jordan Fisher rolled 187-181—368, Aaron Stone rolled 179-184—363 and Logan Jones rolled 150-201—351.
Troy competes in the Lima Pioneer Classic Monday.
BELLEFONTAINE — The Covington wrestling team swept a double dual at Ben Logan Thursday night, defeating Fairbanks 45-25 and then the host Raiders 52-25 to improve its record in duals to 13-4.
Going 2-0 for Covington was: Kellan Anderson (106, one pin), Cael Vanderhorst (113), David Robinson (126, one pin), Trentin Alexander (160, one pin), Gavin McReynolds (182, two pins) and Joseph Franke (195, two pins). Kyle Barga (132) and Seth Iddings (160, one pin) were both 1-0, while Taylen Viney (120), Deacon Shields (145) and Fletcher Metz (152, one pin) were each 1-1 and Clayton Stephan (285, one pin) was 2-1.
Covington travels to Coldwater for another double dual on Jan. 18.
Contact Josh Brown at (937) 552-2132, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter.