Bell tolls for Danville as Wayne rolls

March 11, 2004|MARTY WARREN

LANCASTER - Ashley Bell had a double-double by halftime and finished the game with 22 points and 16 rebounds Wednesday as Wayne County defeated Danville 59-34 in the first game of the girls 12th Region Tournament at Garrard County.

Bell, a junior playing in her fourth straight regional tournament for a team making its 12th straight trip to the regional, had 13 points and 10 rebounds during the first half and Wayne (22-7) broke open a close game after one period to lead 32-16 at the half.

Danville coach Justin Schommer, who guided the Admirals to their first ever regional berth, said Danville didn't have an answer for Bell and the Cardinals' inside game.

"We knew we would have a hard time matching up with her," Schommer said. "She posts up aggressively and goes to the boards hard. She is one of the best players in the region."


Wayne's quickness forced Danville into 12 first half turnovers, and the Admirals' two leading scorers, seniors Krystal Jackson and Monica Vonderbrink, managed to get just five shots apiece.

"We had watched Danville play a couple of times and knew that Jackson did a nice job slicing to the basket and that Vonderbrink could shoot the lights out if you left her open," Wayne coach Tim Pyles said. "Our defense has been our strength all year. We were able to clog up the middle and put just enough pressure on Vonderbrink that she had a hard time getting off a shot."

When they did get off a shot, Wayne was there for the rebound. The Cardinals held a commanding 23-10 rebounding margin at halftime and a 39-25 advantage for the game.

"My biggest concern coming in was rebounding," Pyles said. "Both times I saw Danville during the year, they outrebounded their opponent despite their size disadvantage. Offensive rebounding can break a team's momentum. Our emphasis all night was rebounding the basketball."

Ads finish with best-ever 20-8 record

The second and third chances at the basket proved to be too much in the second quarter for Danville, which finished its most successful season at 20-8. Wayne had scoring runs of 10-0 and 8-2 during the frame, while the Admirals went nearly three minutes without scoring on two occasions.

Jackson picked up her second and third fouls of the half within two minutes of each other, and Schommer elected to leave her on the floor the rest of the half.

"Having Krystal with three fouls hurt us some, but we dug ourselves too big a hole to get out of, and that's tough to come back from," the Danville coach said. "They did a nice job defensively and we didn't set screens or move the ball as we should have on offense."

It didn't get any better in the third quarter. Danville had just one field goal during the first seven minutes, an Amber Wood basket inside the lane midway through the period, and trailed 46-19 before closing the frame with back-to-back buckets by Renee Chiu and reserve Tasha Milby to cut the margin to 46-23.

The Admirals received five points from Vonderbrink and four from Jackson during the fourth quarter, but couldn't make up any ground. The 34 points scored was their lowest point total of the year.

This year's team accomplished two things that had never happened before: They made the All "A" Classic and reached the regional tournament for the first time in school history.

"I think our seniors have started something that our younger kids can learn from," Schommer said. "They worked so hard all year, were very coachable and did a great job leading. To have this many wins is something they can be proud of."

DANVILLE (20-8) - Amber Wood 3, Renee Chiu 6, Monica Vonderbrink 10, Krystal Jackson 10, Tasha Milby 4, Diamond Smith 1.

WAYNE (22-7) - Kenita Ball 8, Kara Gothrup 3, Natalie Brown 6, Ashley Bell 22, Sarah Wixson 9, Lindsey Dishman 3, Latoyla Green 8.

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