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High School Basketball

Wadsworth has date with Canton McKinley after lopsided win over Brunswick

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    Wadsworth's Peyton Banks shoots between Brunswick's Angela Fink (31) and Eileen Salisbury (32) during the second quarter of the District semi-final game.

    RON SCHWANE / GAZETTE

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    Wadsworth's Allison Elchlinger and Brunswick's Gabbi Campbell battle for the ball during the third quarter of the District semi-final game.

    RON SCHWANE / GAZETTE

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MEDINA — The matchup advantages were obvious Monday, and Wadsworth’s girls basketball team didn’t let them go to waste.

The result was arguably the Grizzlies’ best first half of the season, as they took control immediately and dominated physically overmatched Brunswick 63-33 in the Medina Division I District semifinals.

Second-seeded Wadsworth (21-3) advanced to face No. 1 Canton McKinley (23-1), an 83-58 winner over Wooster, on Thursday. It will be the Grizzlies’ eighth consecutive appearance in the district finals.

“(We played) really well,” power forward Peyton Banks said. “I thought we played together as a team.

“Our defense was huge for us, and getting rebounds was a huge key for us because the last few games we haven’t been connected on rebounding. That really helps our offense.”

Like always, the game plan revolved around 6-foot-1 center Lexi Lance, 6-1 backup Kacie Evans and the 5-11 Banks. The sixth-seeded Blue Devils (16-9) started four guards and couldn’t focus on more than one post, so Wadsworth turned stops into secondary breaks that led to in-rhythm touches inside.

Banks finished with game highs of 14 points and 12 rebounds with a coach from Siena Heights (Mich.) in attendance, giving her 34 and 19 in two career games against Brunswick. Toledo recruit Lance had a balanced six points, six rebounds and four assists, while Georgia volleyball commit Evans didn’t miss a shot en route to nine points and seven boards.

The trio scored 11 points as Wadsworth led 14-3 just 5:22 in. The Grizzlies ended the quarter up 22-8.

“Obviously, we’re bigger than them and we needed to crash the boards hard for offensive rebounds,” Banks said. “That gave us easy points.”

While Banks, Evans and Lance were productive, the guards also shined. Kylee Batey (10 points) had eight points and two assists in the first quarter, defensive dynamo Maddie Movsesian added eight points in the second and Taylor Leatherman finished the game with eight.

After watching Wadsworth pound the ball inside against their initial 2-2-1 zone, the Blue Devils switched to a matchup 2-3. Point guard Sophia Fortner (5 points, 3 assists), who later wowed standout Brunswick boys players Nick Felician and Kyle Goessler with a nifty Eurostep for a left-handed layup, organized the offense and Wadsworth consistently got good looks from deep.

The Grizzlies made 14-of-23 field goals, 7-of-7 foul shots and 5-of-9 3-pointers to take a 40-18 halftime lead. Everything after that was window dressing as Wadsworth played well against a quality opponent.

“We just moved the ball really well, and we were finding the open person,” Batey said. “It was fun to play.”

The best 3-point shooting team in Medina County, Brunswick, helped dig its hole by missing shots in the opening minutes. Forward Angela Fink stopped the bleeding with six points, but the Blue Devils were without a trifecta until a fadeaway prayer by Natalie Galaida that was answered at the halftime buzzer.

All-Gazette point guard Eileen Salisbury led Brunswick with 11 points, while Fink and Galaida each added nine. Players not named Galaida were 0-for-12 from 3-point range, and the Blue Devils lost the rebounding battle 29-16.

“Wadsworth’s really well-coached,” Fink said. “They had great defense. We prepared in practice, but the pressure got to us. We needed to come out harder than we did. We let the pressure of the district semis get to us, but we’ll come back next year and maybe get past this.”

Contact Albert Grindle at (330) 721-4043 or agrindle@medina-gazette.com.

Wadsworth 63, Brunswick 33

Medina Division I District Semifinal

BRUNSWICK 8 10 8 7 — 33

WADSWORTH 22 18 11 12 — 63

Brunswick — Gabbi Campbell 0-8 0-0 0, Angela Fink 4-9 1-2 9, Maddy Grabowski 0-0 0-0 0, Natalie Galaida 3-8 0-0 9, Eileen Salisbury 5-13 1-4 11, Anna Krizsa 1-3 0-0 2, Maddy Ramicone 1-2 0-0 2, Jordyn Wickes 0-0 0-0 0, Ally McClelland 0-0 0-0 0, Cheyanne McClutchen 0-0 0-0 0, Maddie Kurtz 0-0 0-0 0. TOTALS: 14-43 2-6 33.

Wadsworth — Taylor Leatherman 3-6 0-0 8, Peyton Banks 5-8 4-4 14, Lexi Lance 3-8 0-0 6, Maddie Movsesian 2-6 3-3 8, Sophia Fortner 2-4 0-0 5, Kacie Evans 4-4 1-1 9, E’Anna Won 0-2 0-0 0, Allison Elchlinger 0-0 0-0 0, Kylee Batey 4-5 0-0 10, Molly Palecek 1-1 0-0 2, Leah Maher 0-2 0-0 0, Maggie Long 0-0 0-2 0, Riley Shriver 0-0 0-0 0, Sami Shaffer 0-0 1-2 1, Steph Andrews 0-0 0-0 0. TOTALS: 24-46 9-12 63.

3-point goals — Brunswick 3-20 (Galaida 3-8, Ramicone 0-1, Campbell 0-5, Salisbury 0-6), Wadsworth 6-15 (Leatherman 2-3, Batey 2-3, Fortner 1-3, Movsesian 1-4, Banks 0-2). Rebounds — Brunswick 16 (Krizsa 6), Wadsworth 29 (Banks 12). Assists — Brunswick 3 (Fink, Salisbury, Krizsa), Wadsworth 16 (Lance 4). Turnovers — Brunswick 15 (Fink 5), Wadsworth 16 (Won 5). Total fouls — Brunswick 14, Wadsworth 9. Fouled out — None. Records — Brunswick (16-9), Wadsworth (21-3).



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