Girls basketball notebook: Titans earn rematch with Margaretta

Mar. 8—ELIDA — Ottawa-Glandorf's girls basketball team proved the power of aggressive defense on Thursday night.

The Titans held Liberty Center to just 18% shooting and only six buckets on their way to a 53-18 rout in the Division III regional semifinals at the Elida Fieldhouse.

"We've been focusing on defense this whole year," said Carlie Brinkman, a 5-foot-7 junior wing who tallied nine points and three steals in the win. "We do it a lot in practice. I think it's something special that our team has. We work really hard at it, and we're all aggressive."

At 7 p.m. on Saturday in Elida, the No. 3-ranked Titans (24-2) face No. 5-ranked Castalia Margaretta, which beat Canal Winchester Harvest Prep, 48-36, in Thursday's opener. Margaretta knocked Ottawa-Glandorf out of the tournament last year in the regional finals, 36-30.

The Titans' boys basketball team's district championship game against Spencerville has been moved to 2 p.m. Saturday at Lima Senior, so fans can watch both games.

The Titans held Liberty Center (23-3) without a score for four minutes in a 7-0 run in the first quarter, three minutes in a 6-0 run in the second quarter, four minutes in an 11-0 run to open the third quarter and for the final 7:39 of the game in a dominant performance.

Along the way, they had nine steals and out-rebounded the Tigers 40-17. As Ottawa-Glandorf coach Troy Yant said after the game, the players were "locked in" on defense. He credited the girls for "absorbing" the scouting report.

They held Liberty Center's Emerson "Eme" Gray, who averaged 16 points a game on her way to first-team Northwest District honors, to six points in the first half and zero points in the second half.

Karsyn Erford, O-G's sophomore 5-foot-7 guard, earned 17 points and nine rebounds to lead her team in both categories. Katie Kaufman, a 6-foot-1 senior and first-team all-Northwest District selection, sat out the second quarter with foul trouble but still had eight points and six rebounds.

Picking up the intensity

ELIDA — Wednesday's Division IV regional semifinal girls basketball game at the Elida Fieldhouse between Columbus Grove and Gibsonburg had a slow start.

Then, Columbus Grove junior standout Lauryn Auchmuty gave the Bulldogs the jolt they needed.

Auchmuty scored a game-high 29 points, including two 3-pointers and 9 of 12 shooting from the free-throw line, and pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds to help lead Columbus Grove to a 53-44 victory over Gibsonburg.

With the win, Columbus Grove (21-5) will face Northwest Conference-foe Crestview (25-2) for a regional championship on Saturday at the Elida Fieldhouse with tip-off set for 1 p.m.

Columbus Grove lost to Crestview in the regular season, 54-43.

"(The) last couple games, we've been starting off pretty slow," Auchmuty said. "We realize that once you lose, you're done. So, the intensity definitely picked up a lot more throughout the game. I just can't wait to play on Saturday."

Along with Auchmuty's stellar performance, teammate Nicole Nesby, a 6-foot sophomore post player, had 12 points.

"Obviously, we weren't really familiar with them," Columbus Grove coach Brian Schroeder said about Gibsonburg. "We haven't played them in the last few years. So, you start to get into the film and watch them — and they resemble us a lot.

"They have one very dynamic point guard (Evarts) and a secondary scorer in (Jazmyne) Morant, and they have some nice players around them. So, when we look at them, it's kind of like looking into a mirror. So, we knew if we could make things hard for her (Evarts), we thought we would give ourselves a good chance. And I thought some of our role players did a really nice job of locating her (Evarts) and making her shots tough. Then, Lauryn (Auchmuty) was able to get us going in transition."

Leaving no doubt

ELIDA — Crestview got the start it wanted.

And Tiffin Calvert never had a chance to recover.

In Wednesday's second Division IV girls regional semifinal basketball game at the Elida Fieldhouse, Crestview jumped out quickly on Tiffin Calvert and never looked back, en route to a 65-40 victory.

With the win, Crestview (25-2) will face Northwest Conference-foe Columbus Grove for a regional championship on Saturday at the Elida Fieldhouse with tip-off set for 1 p.m.

Cali Gregory led Crestview and all scorers with 30 points, including two 3-pointers. Gregory also pulled down seven rebounds and made five steals. Myia Etzler, a 6-foot-2 post player for Crestview, had 12 points and a game-high 11 rebounds. Kaci Gregory added 10 points, five boards, and five steals. Ellie Kline had nine points for the Knights.

"I can't think of a better way for us to start it out," Crestview coach Mark Gregory said. "I thought we had some good looks from the outside and some good looks from the inside. ... We went inside/outside, which is what we talked to the girls about. I'm just so proud. We had a great effort from everybody. Cali set the tone for us and got us started, but we had so many girls who stepped up tonight. I'm just so proud of this group."

Alyssa Rishty led Calvert (17-9) with 18 points, including two 3-pointers. Kate Coleman added 11 points, including two 3-pointers for the Senecas.

Flipping the script

OTTAWA — All season long, Miller City has hung its hat on being a defense-first team.

On Saturday night in the D-IV district final at Ottawa-Glandorf High School, Columbus Grove flipped the script on the Wildcats.

Miller City (17-8) led 7-2 in the first quarter but Columbus Grove (20-5) flexed its defensive muscles, holding the Wildcats scoreless for the game's next 11 minutes and scoring 22 points in the process.

That was enough for the Bulldogs to nab a 48-35 victory and a district title.

"We know that our defense travels," Columbus Grove coach Brian Schroeder said. "You're not always guaranteed a great shooting night, but our defense goes wherever we go. It was honestly about limiting them to one shot. The last time we played, they killed us on the offensive glass, so I really challenged the girls to be physical and I thought we did a great job of finishing our defensive possessions."

Defensively Miller City lived up to its reputation in the first quarter. The Wildcats led for all but the final few seconds when Lauryn Auchmuty hit a three to put Columbus Grove up 9-7.

"They started in a box-and-one, which we'd seen throughout the year, but it really disturbed our rhythm," Schroeder said. "We had to use Lauryn as a ball-screener and Allie Thompson came in and scored, which made them have to go back to man-to-man defense."

Thompson's two that started the second quarter put the Bulldogs up 11-7. After that, Nicole Nesby, Abby Stechschulte, Kedal Palte, and Jade Siefker scored during Columbus Grove's 22-0 run that made it 24-7.

"They (Columbus Grove) applied the pressure on us and we struggled to get the ball in the middle of the zone," Miller City coach Ross Heuerman said. "We couldn't score and in the meantime, they were going down and making shots. That was the difference in the game. We made a little run in the second half, but the second quarter put us in a hole that was too deep to come out of."

Miller City got 10 points from Maddie Erford, who hit three triples in the second half. Isabel Reyna added eight points.

Balance was the theme of Columbus Grove's offense on Saturday night. Nesby and Auchmuty each had a team-high 13 points, while four other players contributed at least four points.

"It was a team effort," Schroeder said. "I thought Miller City did a nice job of guarding Lauryn hard and making her take tough shots. They executed their defensive game plan well. Thankfully we had other girls step up and hit shots."

No end in sight

ELIDA — If Saturday was the end for Ottawa-Glandorf's Katie Kaufman, she wasn't going to let it end because of a lack of effort.

The Titans came back from eight points down in the first half to edge Delphos Jefferson, 47-45, in the Division III district championship at the Elida Fieldhouse. Kaufman scored 12 of her 17 points and grabbed nine of her 14 rebounds in the second half.

"I kept thinking to myself, 'This is your time. No one else is going to do the work for you. Your teammates here want another game. You want another game. You don't want it to end like this,'" said Kaufman, who had three blocks, including a momentum-changing one with 22 seconds left in the game. "So I just kicked it up a bit."

The Titans (22-2), ranked No. 3 in the final Associated Press poll of the year, returned to the regionals with the victory. They face the winner of Saturday night's Tinora-Liberty Center district championship at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Elida Fieldhouse.

The Titans overcame an inspiring effort by Delphos Jefferson's Lyv Lindeman. Lindeman, who injured her leg a week ago, scored 33 points, including four 3-pointers, for the Wildcats (21-4). During the postgame awards ceremonies, teammates helped carry her to the court, as she had trouble walking after the game.

Karsyn Erford added 16 points in the game after tallying 11 in the first half. When Delphos Jefferson tried a diamond-and-one defense to neutralize Erford, she just attracted defenders by driving into the paint before dishing to Kaufman.

"That was all Katie. She found a way to get open," Erford said. Once they came up on me, I knew she was going to be open in the low block. She's really good at that. ... I mean, they couldn't defend both of us."



Columbus Grove 53, Gibsonburg 44

Crestview 65, Tiffin Calvert


Ottawa-Glandorf 53, Liberty Center 18

Marion Local 40, Mississinawa Valley 37


D-IV Regional Finals at Elida

Columbus Grove vs Crestview, 1 p.m.

D-III Regional Finals at Elida

Ottawa-Glandorf vs Margaretta, 7 p.m.



Delphos St. John's 46, Miller City 38

Pandora-Gilboa 53, Ottoville 48

LCC 65, New Bremen 50

Marion Local 51, St. Henry 41


Spencerville 62, Wayne Trace 45

Ottawa-Glandorf 57, Liberty-Benton 41


St. Marys 65, Elida 51

Shawnee 49, Napoleon 48


Games ended after The Lima News deadline. Find scores, game stories, photos and more on

D-IV District Finals at Elida

Delphos St. John's vs Pandora-Gilboa, 6 p.m.

D-IV District Finals at Wapakoneta

LCC vs Marion Local, 7 p.m.


D-II District Finals at Liberty-Benton

Shawnee vs St. Marys, 6 p.m.

D-III District Finals at Lima Senior

Ottawa-Glandorf vs Spencerville, 2 p.m.