The Wood County Lady Wildcats roared to second place in the Division 2 Ohio Special Olympics State Basketball Tournament.
The Lady Wildcats faced Delaware County at St. Francis High School in New Philadelphia. Wood County defeated Delaware 26-10. The Lady Wildcats played very aggressively scoring 18 points the first half to Delaware’s 8. The second half the Lady Wildcats added 8 points and Delaware scored 2 points. Leaders for the Lady Wildcats were Maggie Beeker with 20 points and a basket each for Anne Schooley, Maggie Hunt and Katie Rupert.
In the championship game the following day, the Lady Wildcats played against a tough Stark County team on the Kent State Tuscarawas Campus. The final score was 44-26 with Stark County coming up on top. The Lady Wildcats scored 13 points in each half. Beeker led the team with 13 points; Rupert added 6 points; 2 points each for Tonya Gebby, Maggie Hunt and Schooley; and Kim Paxton with a free throw.
Coach Emma Blank observed the Lady Wildcats’ improvement as a team throughout the season.
“They did a great job moving the ball around the court utilizing each other,” said Coach Emma Blank. “In practice we worked hard on looking for each other and calling out. I saw their efforts really pay off in each game they played.”
To get to the State Basketball Tournament, Wood County won 49-33 against Huron County in the Area Tournament on March 3. They advanced to the West Section Tournament on March 8 winning 31-25 against Wyandot County. During the season, the Lady Wildcats played Lucas, Henry and Sandusky Counties.
“I enjoyed watching the ladies play so well and having fun at the same time,” said Blank.
Bottom L-R: Katie Rupert, Kristin Fisher, Anne Schooley, Maggie Hunt, Melissa Frizado
Middle L-R: Tonya Gebby, Maggie Beeker
Top L-R: Coach Emma Blank, Kim Paxton, Mary Bigaila, Sam Eaton, Virginia Downs, Coach Rebecca Eierman, Bailey Whitner