SIDNEY – Top-seeded Fort Loramie hounded Mechanicsburg and defeated the Indians, 63-28, in a Division IV girls basketball sectional final on Wednesday.
The Redskins, Ohio’s top-ranked team in Division IV, looked every bit as formidable as expected en route to the victory.
The Indians fell into an 11-0 hole before senior Elly Schipfer finally got the goose egg off the board.
Many times, Mechanicsburg simply failed to convert open layups and looked jittery. Even with a sloppy first quarter, it could have been 14-10 instead of 14-4.
“And then that propels you into the next quarter. But when you miss so many, and dig yourself into a hole … they’re a good team. A very good team. And you cannot have those mistakes,” MHS Coach Christie Dodane said. “We knew we had to play a flawless game, or as close as we could. And we didn’t. We talked about how we didn’t have anything to lose, so just go play. And we didn’t.”
Along with a dismal 22 percent night from the floor, turnovers haunted Mechanicsburg early and throughout the game, with the Indians committing 18 in the first half and 27 for the game.
The lead grew to 32-11 at halftime and continued to widen as the Redskins wore down an inspired Mechanicsburg effort in the second half.
“I think part of it is their ‘hockey’ subbing, where they just have fresh people all the time. And we subbed, but we didn’t sub as much, and I think especially with my big kids inside, that wore on them,” Dodane said.
Grace Forrest led the Indians with 10 points, while Elly Schipfer had 7 points and 5 rebounds and Kasey Schipfer added 6 points.
The Indians finish the season at 16-9 overall and wave goodbye to seniors Shannon Dingey and Elly Schipfer.
Schipfer, especially, was a factor throughout her career, which was marred by injury.
“She’s a special girl. Not only a great player, but a great leader. And at halftime, she said ‘Hey Coach, can you go out and give me a minute with them?’” Dodane said. “I respect that. She wanted to try to rally the troops. And she’s a great kid. We’ll miss her. We’ll miss her leadership and we’ll miss her rebounding for sure.”
Reach Justin Miller at 652-1331 (ext. 1776) or on Twitter @UDC_Miller.