VANDALIA — Fort Loramie avenged an earlier setback at the hands of their neighboring rivals and set the stage for another trip to the state tournament with a 36-30 victory over Minster in Division 4 Regional semifinal girls basketball action at Vandalia Butler High School Wednesday.
The win gave Loramie a 23-4 record and advanced the Lady Redskins to the regional championship at 7:30 Saturday night at Vandalia against the winner of tonight’s other semifinal between Jackson Center and Miami Valley.
Minster bows out with a final 21-5 record.
The verdict came down to shooting. Though neither team hit well from the field, Minster was just 12 for 42 for 29 percent, and did not score a field goal from the 5:11 mark of the third quarter to the final buzzer. That basket, by Lindsay Roetgerman, tied the game at 24-24, but the Lady Redskins scored the final six points of the quarter for a 30-26 lead.
Two free throws by Jessica Boerger upped Fort Loramie’s lead to 32-24 with 7:27 remaining in the game, but the Lady Wildcats mounted a comeback, with all the points coming from the free throw line.
Courtney Prenger hit one of two free throws, then Alli Borgerding hit a pair with 5:28 left. Hannah Schmitmeyer than added two more free throws with 3:32 remaining in the game to slice the lead to 32-29.
Boerger hit one of two free throws to make it 3-29, and after the two teams traded turnovers — five total in a span of two minutes — Prenger’s free throw cut the lead to 33-20 with 1:03 left.
Fort Loramie was in no hurry to shoot, and Olivia Quingter added a free throw with :38 left to make it 34-30.
Prenger then missed at the other end, and Holly Frey hit two free throws with :21 left to make it 36-30 and secure the win for the Lady Redskins.
Boerger finished with 20 to lead the Lady Redskins, including 7 for 9 from the line. She also pulled down six rebounds.
“We needed Jessica to have a big-time game tonight and she did just that,” said Loramie coach Carla Siegel. “We needed her to score, get rebounds and steals, anything she could do to help us. She also played great defense.
“I loved our defense tonight,” she went on. “It was an unbelievable team effort. Our heart and determination was incredible out there. We knew that Minster was a great team and that we probably wouldn’t be able to play like we normally do. We did a good job, though, of making adjustments.”
Minster, which led 10-6 after one quarter, was paced by Prenger with 14 points. Rosie Westerbeck added eight, and Schmitmeyer had seven rebounds.
For Loramie, Frey added six points and seven rebounds.
“We just never got going on offense,” said Minster coach Nann Stechschulte. “We had some hurried shots, but we took some good ones, too and they just didn’t fall. We knew it would be a defensive struggle and the team that would make more plays would come out on top.”