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Melrose sweeps Elida in District 3-1A

 


MELROSE — It’s been a while since the Melrose girls beat Elida in basketball.

So long, in fact, that no one could remember for sure the last time it happened after the Lady Buffaloes rode 30-of-38 free throw shooting and double-figure scoring from four players to a 67-53 whipping of the Lady Tigers in District 3-1A action Friday night.

Melrose’s inside tandem of junior Audrey Hemminger (25 points, 15 rebounds) and senior Allison Cochran (15 points, 10 rebounds), both 6-foot-2, thoroughly dominated the inside. The Lady Buffs (7-10, 2-0 district) also got 14 points from senior Jessica Hail and 11 from 6-foot sophomore Schuyler Cochran.

“We have a big rivalry with Elida and (fellow district foe) Fort Sumner,” Hemminger said. “Those teams have kept us from getting out of district the last few years, and I’d like to make it out of district sometime before (her career ends).”

After Elida’s Shalie Anthony broke a 13-13 tie with the first basket of the second quarter, Melrose took control with the next 16 points. All five starters scored in the surge, led by Allison Cochran with seven points.

The Lady Buffs pushed their lead into double figures for good two minutes into the third quarter, and led by as much as 21 points in the late going.

“They played really well tonight,” said Lady Tigers coach Dan Howard, who surmised Melrose’s last win in the series was sometime in the mid-1990s. “They beat us to spots all over the floor. Melrose was ready to play tonight, and they played really well.”

Hemminger finished 13-for-15 from the line, making the last 12 in a row, while Allison Cochran went 7-for-7. They helped foul out three Elida starters.

“We’ve been working a lot better as a team,” Hemminger said. “We’ve had some problems, but we’ve just started pulling it together. We’ve realized we can’t fight all the time if we want to go to state.”

Also sparking the Lady Buffs was a switch from man-to-man defense to a 2-3 zone during the first quarter. Coach Sheila Roberts experimented briefly with a 1-3-1 before finding the 2-3 seemed to suit her team.

“That was a fun win,” Roberts said. “I think we’re just now meshing. We’ve got the two big girls, and they’re hard to stop. My two big girls stepped up tonight, and they did a heck of a job.”

The Lady Tigers (8-8, 1-1) put three players in double figures, led by senior Samantha Southard with three 3-pointers and 11 points. Senior Keisha Chenault and sophomore Kodi Armitage each scored 10.

Melrose boys 73, Elida 45 — Sophomore Carlos Ruiz scored Melrose’s first 10 points in less than two minutes and the Buffaloes (10-5, 2-0) cruised past the outmanned Tigers.

Eleven of Melrose’s 15 players scored, led by Ruiz with 18 points, senior Harvey Park with 11 and sophomore Stefan Wagley with 10. Six players combined on the Buffs’ seven 3-pointers.

Wesley Gilmore, one of two eighth graders starting for the Tigers (2-11, 0-2), led all scorers with 21 points. He had three of Elida’s five 3-pointers.

 
 

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