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Sectional Girls Basketball: Leipsic, Patrick Henry advance at O-G

By DAVE HANNEMAN
Staff Writer
OTTAWA — Ayersville and Holgate got sandwiched Saturday night, and Patrick Henry and Leipsic were the ones serving the Pilots and Tigers up.
Ayersville’s 16-8 season started and ended with losses to Patrick Henry, the final one a 39-33 setback in the opener of Saturday’s Division IV girls sectional finals at Ottawa-Glandorf.
Holgate also finished 16-8, its first and last losses being to Leipsic, including a 40-30 setback in Saturday’s second game at Robert J. Hermiller Gymnasium,
Patrick Henry and Leipsic, who needed second-half comebacks to win sectional championships, advance to the Division IV girls district at Liberty-Benton.
The Patriots (22-1) will face McComb (17-7) in Thursday’s 6:15 p.m. district opener. Leipsic (15-8) and Riverdale (13-10) meet in the second game.
Both sectional finals involved wild swings of momentum.
Patrick Henry trailed 17-8 after a 9-0 Ayersville run in the first quarter and 25-17 late in the second. But the Patriots capitalized on the absence of Ayersville’s Megan Schubert, a 6-foot-4 junior who had to sit because of foul trouble, and rallied.
Kelsey Tietje, a 6-3 senior having an all-Ohio type season, scored all nine of Patrick Henry’s points in the third quarter, then added eight points and seven rebounds in fourth when the Patriots finally locked it down.
“I was getting nervous, but the girls have been there before,” PH coach Joe Pennington said of a Patriots’ team that has overcome big deficits in three straight games.
“We dug a hole, but I’m proud of all the girls for how we fought back into it.”
Tietje had a monster game with 23 points and 12 rebounds. Seventeen of her points and eight of her rebounds came in the second half.
“The problem was we got into foul trouble,” said Ayersville coach Craig Cicero. “With Megan out, it changes our size, it changes our whole game.”
Molly Hmamersmith, a talneted 6-0 freshman had 10 points and 10 rebounds for Holgate.
The Tigers took their early leads thanks to a quick, scrambling defense that forced a number of Patrick Henry turnovers. Patrick Henry turned the ball over just five times in the second half, however.
Leipsic’s game with Holgate featured even wilder runs, rallies and rebounds.
Leipsic bolted to a 12-3 lead and was up 14-5 after one period. Holgate rattled off the next 15 points, however, and only Haley Kreinbrink’s 3-pointer with 19 seconds on the clock kept Leipsic from being blanked in the second quarter.
Leipsic then turned the tables, shutting Holgate out during an 11-0 third quarter to go back in front 28-20. The Vikings held that edge by converting 10 of 12 free throws in the final eight minutes.
“The biggest shot of the game might have been Haley’s ‘3’ right before the half,” said Leipsic coach Gary Kreinbrink.
“It cut their lead from six (20-14) to three (20-17), it gave us momentum going into the second half, and we were getting the ball to start the third quarter.
“Both teams struggled offensively and both played great defense.”
Maddie Steffan led Leipsic with 10 points, Haley Gerten had nine and Amber Gerdeman eight. Kelly Nadler grabbed nine rebounds and Gerten and Gerdeman snared eight each as the Vikings dominated a smaller, younger Holgate team 32-23 on the boards.
Mattie Grom scored 13 points and Marissa Myles had 10 for Holgate, which had no seniors on the roster and played just six players the entire game.

FIRST GAME
AYERSVILLE (16-8)
Cramer 2-6 0-1—5, Hammersmith 3-11 4-6—10, Schubert 4-6 0-0—8, Addington 2-6 3-5—7, Schroeder 1-5 2-2—4, Church 0-3 1-2—1, Thieroff 0-0 0-0—0. TOTALS: 11-36 10-16—33.
PATRICK HENRY (22-1)
Bostelman 0-8 1-6—1, Meyer 0-2 0-0—0, Michaelis 1-4 1-2—3, Hammer 2-5 0-1—6, Tietje 8-12 7-11—23, Bower 2-4 0-0—4, Nye 1-2 0-1—2, Fintel 0-1 0-0—0. TOTALS: 14-39 9-21—39.
Ayersville   20 5 5 3 — 33
Patrick Henry   11 8 9 11 — 39
3-Point GOALS: Ayersville 1-9 (Cramer 1-4, Hammersmith 0-1, Addington 0-1, Schroeder 0-3); Patrick Henry 2-9 (Bostelman 0-1, Meyer 0-1,  Fintel 0-1, Michaelis 0-1, Hammer 2-5).
rebounds: Ayersville 29 (Hammersmith 10); Patrick Henry 35 (Tietje 12).
turnovers: Ayersville 14, Patrick Henry 13.
SECOND GAME
HOLGATE (16-8)
Abel 0-3 0-0—0, Mylers 5-9 0-0—10, Grim 6-10 0-3—13, Niese 1-10 1-2—3, Desgranges 1-3 2-6—11, Clady 0-6 0-0—0. TOTALS: 13-41 3-11—30.
LEIPSIC (15-8)
Morman 1-4 2-2—4, Gerdeman 3-12 2-3—8, Nadler 1-2 1-2—3, H. Gerten 2-7 3-4—9, Steffan 3-5 4-4—10, H, Kreinbrink 2-2 0-0—6, N. Kreinbrink 0-0 0-0—0, Schroeder 0-0 0-0—0, K, Gerten 0-0 0-0—0. TOTALS: 12-32 12-15—40.
Holgate   5 15 0 10 — 30
Leipsic   14 3 11 12 — 40
3-Point GOALS: Holgate 1-16 (Abel 0-2,  Myles 0-1, Grim 1-2, Niese 0-5, Clady 0-6); Leipsic 4-9 (H. Kreinbrink 2-2, Morman 0-2, H. Gerten 2-4, Steffan 0-1).
rebounds: Holgate 23 (Myles 6, Niese 5); Leipsic 32 (Nadler 9, Gerdeman 8, H. Gerten 8).
turnovers: Holgate 12, Leipsic 19.
Hanneman: 419-427-8408,
davehanneman@thecourier.com