BATH TOWNSHIP — Ottawa-Glandorf did not do anything out of the ordinary.
The Titans came out with its usual pesky man-to-man defense and caused havoc for most of Thursday night’s key Western Buckeye League girls basketball matchup at Bath.
O-G’s defensive pressure helped overcome a subpar shooting performance, en route to a 46-36 victory over Bath.
For the game, O-G shot just 33 percent from the field.
However, the Titans forced 22 Bath turnovers and also controlled the boards (35-21) for the entire contest.
With the win, O-G improves to 10-1 overall and remains perfect in the WBL at 3-0. Bath slips to 5-6 overall and 2-1 in the WBL.
Ashley Schroeder led O-G with 11 points, eight rebounds and three steals. Erin Kaufman, a 5-foot-11 freshman post player, scored 10 points and had eight boards. Kelsey Erford, a 5-7 guard, pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds for the Titans.
Ruby Bolon led Bath with 10 points and two blocks. Teammate Chandler Clark added eight points, including two 3-pointers.
“No matter how good of a team you have, you’re just happy to come out of here with a win; and that’s the way we’ll take it,” O-G coach Troy Yant said with a grin.
O-G got out to a 9-4 lead by the end of the first quarter. The Titans’ defensive pressure forced eight Bath turnovers in the first eight minutes of action.
Bath managed just 1 of 3 shooting from the field in the first stanza.
However, Bath cut the deficit to 1, 19-18, by the halftime break. The Wildkittens out-scored the Titans 14-10 in the second quarter.
Neither team shot well in the first half. O-G was 8 of 32 from the field for 25 percent. The Titans limited the Wildkittens, as Bath was 6 of 14 from the floor for 43 percent.
Bath settled down in the second quarter, turning the ball over just four times.
O-G dominated the boards in the first half, 21-12.
Bath claimed its first lead, 22-21, on a put back by Ruby Bolon at the 6:30 mark of the third quarter.
The Titans responded.
O-G went on a 12-0 run, pushing out to a 33-22 advantage.
“We kind of talked about it at halftime,” Yant said. “I didn’t think our girls were playing poorly in the second quarter, at least defensively. But we gave up 14
points in the second quarter. We were rushing everything on offense and taking bad shots. We changed up a couple things in the second half.”
Bath cut the O-G lead to 6, 33-27 by the third stop. Madelyn Renner (seven points) came off the bench for the Wildkittens to hit a trey and a field goal to help Bath pull within six points.
Bath cut it to 5, 41-36, with a little more than a minute left to play in the game, on Clark’s second 3-pointer of the night.
However, O-G staved off the Wildkittens down the stretch for the win.
Longtime Bath coach Greg Mauk pointed to rebounds and turnovers as being the two keys to Thursday’s game.
”I think by halftime, they (O-G) had 12 points off offensive rebounds, and it’s a 19-18 game,” Mauk said. “That’s what got the ball rolling. Then we started to turn the ball over and it snowballed for us. But they (O-G) are a really good defensive team. We knew they would play good man-to-man defense. But we knew we could not let our turnovers result into points; and they did.”
On the night, Bath shot 42 percent from the floor. However, the Wildkittens only got off 33 shot attempts, compared to O-G’s 52.
“We have some inexperience on the floor, and we struggle sometimes to shoot the ball,” Mauk said. “However, the one bright spot for us tonight was Madelyn Renner. It was her first game back (from an injury); and she didn’t miss a shot. We struggle rebounding, and she will definitely help us.”
Added Yant, “They (Bath) did a great job of staying with us and forcing us to play. For being as young as they are, they’ll be pretty good. You never know how a team will respond. I was proud of our team. We settled down and played pretty well.”
Reach The Lima News sports department at 567-242-0451.