SPENCERVILLE — Shawnee started the game with a 3-pointer.
From there, the Indians cut loose an avalanche of 3-pointers.
Shawnee hit 15 of 31 on 3-pointers and that was enough to post a 65-61 victory over Elida in the opener of the Division II girls basketball sectional tournament Tuesday at Spencerville.
The game quickly turned in a rare offensive track meet. Shawnee would sprint to the 3-point line and knock down shots, while Elida would push the fast break and continually take the ball all the way to the basket.
“That’s what we we worked on,” Shawnee coach Jeff Heistan said. “We worked on pushing and shooting and we wanted to go right at them.”
Shawnee (10-13) advances to the sectional finals against No. 2 seed Celina at 6:15 p.m. Saturday at Spencerville. Elida ends its season 8-15.
“We work at them a lot,” Shawnee guard Britt Lauck said of the 15 3-pointers. “I think we were waiting for a game that for them to start falling. We have really good 3-point shooters. I know we can shoot well. This game things were falling for us.”
In the second sectional opener of the night, Wapakoneta rolled past St. Marys 53-31.
For Shawnee, four different players hit at least two 3-pointers. Ohio Northern-bound Lauck led the way with 17 points and four 3-pointers. Isabelle Baird had 15 points and five 3-pointers. Rachel Evans had 12 points and four 3-pointers. Abby Waddle had 11 points, including seven in the final quarter.
Elida led 22-19 after the first quarter and the game was tied at 38 at halftime. At the half, the Indians had hit 10 of 16 on 3-pointers.
“Isabelle hit a couple in a row and then I realized that everyone was on fire,” Lauck said.
In the third quarter, Elida went from a zone to a box-and-one on Lauck.
“I took our post out and went with a small lineup, especially against their box-and-one, and we did a nice job attacking that in the paint,” Heistan said. “I think that hurt them right there in the third quarter.”
Shawnee took the lead to stay, 52-50, on a 3-pointer by Baird with 20 seconds left in the third quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Shawnee used a 7-0 spurt to pull out to a 62-53 lead with 4:40 to go. During that run, Waddle hit a fast-break layup and a driving 5-footer, while Lauck dropped a 3-pointer.
Elida won the regular-season game between the two 43-40 on Jan. 17.
While Shawnee camped out and drilled 3-pointers, Elida won the battle inside with its driving layups and second shots. Elida’s Kyle Downtown, Defiance-bound Osha Owens and Sabrina Kline all scored 14 points. Owens and Kline both hit two 3-pointers.
Elida won the boards, 40-22. Downton had 12 rebounds for Elida. Torrie McAdams had nine points and 10 boards.
Elida shot 56 percent from the field and was 6 of 17 on 3-pointers. Shawnee hit 43 percent from the field, but was 48 percent on threes.
“It feels good. I’ve been waiting to win that first game,” the senior Lauck said.
Wapakoneta 53, St. Marys 31
Wapakoneta used its full-court, man-to-man press to run out to an 18-4 lead and coasted home from there.
The Redskins led 30-6 at the half and had forced 15 St. Marys’ turnovers by that point.
“We came out with some intensity and put together that intensity for 16 minutes,” Wapakoneta coach Rusty Allen said. “We figured we could put some pressure on their guards.”
Wapakoneta (12-11) advances to the sectional finals against No. 1 seed Bath at 8 p.m. Saturday at Spencerville. St. Marys ends its year 3-20.
Wapakoneta sophomore Megan Watt came off the bench to score 15 points. Sara Warner added 12 points. Freshman Riley Culver had six rebounds with her four points.
Wapakoneta won the boards, 37-33. The Redskins shot 39 percent from the field and was 2 of 13 on 3-pointers. St. Marys hit 32 percent from the field and also had 22 turnovers.