senior Lauren Monnin hits for two of her game high 19 points
as the Tigers
toppled West-Liberty Salem, (WLS) 46-37 in Regional
Semi-Final action Wednesday at
Springfield High School. The Tigers will
playSaturday at 1:30 pm against Marion Pleasant.
The winner will move
on to the state semi-finals in Columbus.
CNO Photos by Dylan Knoop
back in familiar spot
Regional final next
By George Starks
SRRINGFIELD- It’s a familiar place for Versailles head coach Jackie
Stonebreaker and her Lady Tigers.
Wednesday, at Springfield High School, Versailles was able to advance
to the regional finals with a 46-37 victory over West Liberty Salem
One more win and the Tigers will once again find themselves in
Columbus, looking for another state title.
“I’m really proud of these girls,” Stonebraker said. “We were written
off last year, and then we made it back to state. I really felt like we
were written off this year after losing nine previous seniors the year
before and then four last year. I really think that these girls are
just hungry. They want to make their mark on the Versailles program.”
While most coaches will say that games are often decided in the first
three or four minutes of the third quarter, it wasn’t the case for the
Holding a slim, 24-22 lead at the half, the Tigers looked as if they
were ready to walk away with the game to start the third.
After junior Mikalia McIntosh open up the third quarter with a three
ball, giving WLS a 25-24 lead, the Tigers responded in a big way.
Just 42 seconds after the McIntosh trey, sophomore Kami McEldowney
drained a triple of her own.
That bucket started a ray by Versailles that would eventually lead to a
34-25 lead with 3:16 left in the frame.
Versailles would continue to maintain its lead throughout the quarter
and hold a 38-32 lead with eight minutes left to play.
What looked to be a promising victory turned into near disaster in the
West Liberty Salem came out with all guns blazing to start the fourth.
In less than two minutes, WLS had closed the gap from a six point
deficit to a 38-37 Versailles lead.
It was a staunch Versailles defense that would help keep that lead.
From the trey by freshman Gabby Hollar at the 5:44 mark foe WLS to the
2:52 mark of the frame, the Versailles defense would not allow another
point in that timeframe.
At the 2:52 mark, McEldowney would score in the paint, getting the
Tigers their first bucket of the quarter.
Versailles would go on an 8-0 spurt with 24.5 second remaining and a
With 6-4 senior Jamie Peterson looming in the paint, averaging 15
points a game, the Tigers shut her down on offense, holding her to only
six points on the night despite creating havoc in the lane on defense
with five blocked shots and several more altered because of her
In addition, junior Lily Yoder (13 ppg) was stopped with only five
points to her credit.
On offense, Versailles was led by senior Lauren Monnin with 19 points
(nine in the opening quarter) while McEldowney chipped in with 10 for
the Versailles cause.
“She carried the whole team,” Stonebraker said of Monnin’s first
quarter scoring. “Even throughout the game we felt like she could go
against Peterson. There’s a point I think Peterson was guarding her,
and she scored six points right over her so they had to change their
defense and put a guard on her.”
With Peterson making her share of problems for WLS, it was sophomore
Danielle Winner that was returning the favor for Versailles on defense.
Winner netted only seven points but had five boards with four blocked
shots of her own.
“She played great sick, didn’t she? You’d never know it out there,”
said Stonebreaker. “She had to take a couple breaks, but I felt like we
needed her in the game to defend Peterson.”
Versailles will now move on to play Marion Pleasant, a 48-20 winner
over Bethel-Tate out of the Cincinnati area.
“They’re a very aggressive team defensively, and they’re very
aggressive offensively,” Stonebraker said of Pleasant. “They like to
get to the hole. They like to score. We’ll see what our defense can
come up with. I’m not real sure what we’re going to do because quite
frankly I didn’t look past this game.”
The regional championship game will be played at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at
Springfield High School.
If the Tigers prevail, they will play at the Jerome Schottenstein
Center on Thursday, March 10 at 1:00 pm.
Danielle Winner had her hands full with WLS senior Jamie
(10). Peterson blocked five shots including this one against
A jubilant Versailles team celebrates after downing the Tigers of WLS.