TROY — This season, the girls high school basketball teams from Legacy Christian and Cedarville have been among the Greene County area’s best around. But in Saturday afternoon’s March 3 Division IV district title games at Troy High School, in back-to-back games, the two teams’ seasons came to an end.
Legacy Christian fell to Covington, 54-42 in the first game.
Cedarville lost to Fort Loramie, 57-45 in the second.
Knights coach Mark Combs said the week of practice didn’t go particularly well, because of a rash of minor injuries throughout the LCA lineup.
“We’re a little banged up, which is the first week we’ve dealt with that all year. Not to take anything away from Covington. When you get to this stage, you’re playing against really good teams. I just didn’t think some shots that maybe normally would fall, did. We missed a few layups, maybe a few free throws, but we got beat by a good team.”
Combs says he’ll lose some seniors who were “significant parts to our program.
“All of that senior class (Hannah Barber, Olivia Combs, Anne Kensinger and Tabitha Moser), they’re the winningest class we’ve had through four years. We’re going to miss their leadership, but we’ve got a lot of talent returning, too.”
During that foursome’s stay at LCA, the Knights had an overall record of 69 wins and 24 losses (.742), and finished with a solid 22-4 mark this season. The team’s top three scorers are back next season as well, including Emma Hess, the Metro Buckeye Conference’s top scorer with a 14.3 average.
In Saturday’s afternoon loss, Hess finished with a team-best 22 points, Kathleen Ahner scored 11, Emily Riddle scored four, Olivia Combs finished with three and Danielle Mathews scored two.
The second game saw up-n-coming Cedarville (20-6) go up against one of the established powerhouses in Ohio basketball.
Ft. Loramie (21-5) is one of a handful of Ohio teams to win more than 800 basketball games. They have 24 conference, 24 district, so far nine regional, and two state championships in the program’s history.
Cedarville caught the Redskins’ attention after the Indians went into the halftime locker room with a 22-20 lead, but Fort Loramie outscored Cedarville 37-23 the rest of the way.
Indians coach Josh Mason couldn’t thank senior Ise Bolender for the career she had at Cedarville.
“She’s going to down in the record books as the all-time best scorer in school history. She’ll finish with just under 1,900 points in her career, and that says it right there,” Mason said. “But I think what says the most about her is her leadership. You go in that locker room. We’re devastated right now, but we’ve got a leader in there making sure everyone knows that she wouldn’t trade this for the world.
“And throughout the year and every single hiccup that we’ve had, she’s always stepped up. Her leadership abilities won’t be found in a box score, but that’s what we’re definitely going to miss.”
Junior Maggie Coe led the Indians in scoring with a game-high 17 points, Bolender was next with 14, fellow senior Celeste Rucker scored eight points and junior Kaylee Cyphers finished with six in the loss.
Half of the Cedarville lineup — Bolender, Rucker, Sami Buetell, Abby Camarato and Audrey Waymire — saw their respective high school basketball careers end with Saturday’s Ft. Loramie loss.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.