ADA, OH – With their 48-37 victory on Tuesday night at Ohio Northern University the Ottawa Glandorf Titans are headed for their fourth straight regional finals appearance on Saturday afternoon and a chance at a fourth straight appearance in Columbus.
OG scored the first five points of the ballgame on a layup by Ashley Schroeder and a three pointer from Carri Johnson and never trailed as they handed Liberty Benton their second loss of the season. Back in December the Titans visited Findlay and defeated the Eagles 58-53 in come from behind fashion.
Erin Kaufman’s free throw pushed the Ottawa Glandorf lead to 6-0 before Liberty Benton was able to respond on a Caitlin Elseser charity toss and a pass from Savanah Richards to Elseser for two to cut the lead to 6-3. Elseser would lead the normally high flying Eagles offense with 7 of her game high tying 14 points but the Titan trio of Kaufman, Schroeder, and Carri Johnson would team up with Western Buckeye League Player of the Year Kadie Hempfling to help outscore them 17-9 heading into the second period.
Hempfling, who broke the schools scoring record in the District Finals matchup on Saturday against Crestview rode a personal hot streak for all six of her second stanza points and along with a 3 from Schroeder helped to put her club on top at the halftime stoppage 28-17.
Both teams ratcheted up their defensive intensity in the games penultimate quarter as Liberty Benton outscored their rivals 9-8 and cut the lead to 36-26. Balanced scoring from four players pushed the Eagles but OG was pushed by the duo of Hempfling and freshman guard Kelsey Erford who hit a layup and a pair from the free throw line for her only points on the night.
Savanah Richards sliced the Titan defense for a pair of layups but saw her scoring on the evening limited to nearly seven points below her average as she finished with 10. Elseser connected on a jumper and 3 of 4 from the free throw line but saw her team fall when the final quarter came to an end as Ashley Schroeder ended with half of her game high tying 14 take place in the fourth period.
The games final marker came on a long outlet pass from Hempfling to sophomore Brianna Schimmoeller who garnered her only two points on a fast break layup with :06 remaining to secure a 48-37 OG victory.
Liberty Benton has now fallen to the Titans five consecutive times including twice this season and ends their 2017-18 campaign as Blanchard Valley Conference champions and with a 25-2 mark.
Ottawa Glandorf improves to 24-2 on the season and will play the winner of Wednesday night’s matchup in Lexington of Amanda Clearcreek and Western Reserve at 1:30pm on Saturday afternoon in Lexington for the right to advance to the Division 3 Final Four.
Ashley Schroeder 14
Kelsey Erford 4
Carri Johnson 8
Erin Kaufman 6
Brianna Schimmoeller 2
Kadie Hempfling 14
3PT: 3/16 (Johnson 2, Schroeder)
REB: 34 (Hempfling 11)
Liberty Benton (37):
Sammy Shardo 1
Savanah Richards 10
Caitlin Elseser 14
Alissa Rhodes 2
Alexa Lenhart 2
Schy Shepherd 8
REB: 26 (Elseser 11)