Bulldogs fall in state semifinals 03.23.2011

Written by David Green.

tia.semiBy DAVID GREEN

There was more than one game this season when Morenci’s girls came through as the third-quarter team. Coach Tim Yatzek hoped that’s what he was about to see Thursday at the Class D state semifinals.

After a couple of missed shots by Bark River-Harris, Morenci’s Tess Ramsey grabbed an offensive rebound and put it through the hoop.

Half a minute later, Matea Garcia hit a jumper and the Bulldogs were down by eight points, 32-24.

“I thought it was going to be another big third quarter at first,” Yatzek said, but he soon found it wasn’t to be.

The Broncos followed with a three-pointer, then a steal and layup. Brooke Bovee pulled in a defensive rebound and drove the court for a layup to make it an 11-point game, 37-26, with 5:27 to play in the third.

But that’s about all the Bulldogs could take of the Broncos’ fast-paced game. Nearly everybody on the floor for Morenci was turning the ball over. Sloppy passes, missed shots, slow under the boards—everything went against the Bulldogs, which only boosted the Broncos’ enthusiasm.

Morenci never scored again in the quarter while Bark River-Harris went on a 16-0 rampage to take the contest way out of reach.

“I think we used up so much energy in the first two minutes of the quarter that we were gassed,” Yatzek said. “The Broncos executed their game plan very well.”

Bark River-Harris ran the Bulldogs to death and ran away with the semifinal title, 66-44.

“It’s not an in-your-face press, but it makes you run,” Yatzek said. “Besides, they had some girls who could really put the ball in the hole.”

Tompkins hit three buckets in the final quarter and Bovee added five points, but the Bulldogs trimmed little off the Broncos’ big lead.

In the first quarter, Morenci jumped to a 9-2 lead on two jumpers by Tompkins, a three-pointer by Garcia and a layup from Ramsey. The Broncos fired up and took a 16-15 first-quarter lead, despite three more buckets from Tompkins.

In the second quarter, Morenci added only two points from the line before Garcia sank a three-pointer with 1:33 to play. The Broncos took a 10-point lead into intermission before resting up for the decisive third quarter.

Morenci ended the game with 28 turnovers.

A big loss but...

“I’ve never had so much fun playing or coaching,” Coach Yatzek said about the post-season play. “It was awesome.”

He knows the team is disappointed in the outcome at Breslin Center, but he figures a couple years down the road the girls will look back on the season and realize what they achieved especially entering the tournament with a 9-10 record.

“It’s a huge accomplishment for them,” he said.

Only one other Morenci team—the 1974 girls—has advanced to the semifinals.

  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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