By Joe Ostrica
The Avon girls basketball team was ready for the challenge when the 11th-seeded Lady Eagles were paired up with the No. 5-seeded Westlake Lady Demons in a Division I sectional finals contest Feb. 20. Westlake was 17-4 entering the game and had defeated Avon 51-44 in a Nov. 29 matchup earlier in the season.
“Our game plan was to play physical and aggressive defense,” Avon head coach Meghan Larrick said. “Our goal was to contain and to keep them in front of us. Westlake is a great team that attacks the basket well, but who also has great outside shooters. We worked on containing them and getting our hands up on defense. Our aggressive defense was the difference in the game.”
The plan paid off as Avon limited Westlake to 22 percent shooting from the field. A 12-4 run in the first quarter helped put the Lady Eagles up 14-9 and they never looked back.
“It was a great team win,” Larrick said. “Everyone contributed and played their role. Westlake is a great team. Our girls are very excited about the win. This is absolutely huge for our team and program. We have never been able to beat Westlake. We have been close but have never gotten the win, so this win is big for our confidence. We are playing good basketball right now.”
Mackenzie Meckes led the Lady Eagles with nine points. Alyssa Douzos and Allie Bjorn scored seven points apiece. Brianna Conroy chipped in six points. Sierra Davidson (four points), Regan Betts (two points) and Catie Kelly (one free throw) rounded out the scoring for Avon.
Avon was scheduled to play No. 7-seeded Wooster Feb. 24 in a district semifinals contest.
“Wooster tonight is a great basketball team,” Larrick said. “They play a matchup zone, so we are hoping that we can execute. We must play our game. We need to play aggressive defense and we also need to be able to take care of the basketball and execute.
“We are very happy with how are season is going. We are 17-6 and playing the best basketball of the season.”
Monica Fury led Westlake with 15 points, including two 3-pointers. Rebecca Essig added six points. Erin O’Neill (four points) and Paige Rimko (two points) rounded out the scoring for the Lady Demons. Weslake ends its season at 17-5.