Demonstrating why they’re one of the must-beat teams in the Southwestern Conference, the Olmsted Falls Bulldogs started strong Saturday, led by sophomore Sarah Balfour with seven points on three baskets.
Balfour, Francesca Klypchak, Kara Marshall and Clare Kelly all scored three-pointers for a 21-13 first quarter finish.
For the Comets, Sydney Roule had seven points, one from beyond the arc, while Kate Iliff notched four and Jayla Hall had two points in the period.
“We gave up 21 points in the first quarter. That’s just way too many,” said coach Kevin Collins after the game. “After that first quarter, when we settled down and we got into that half court, we did everything right. We got the ball into the people’s hands we wanted and then it spread out a little bit because we were playing our game instead of trying to play theirs.”
The Amherst girls battled back to within two points with a 28-26 halftime score.
Rebounding was key, especially in this period as Hall pulled in five of the Comets’ 21 first-half rebounds to help hold the Bulldogs to six points. That assisted in setting up Iliff for a three-pointer and Audrey Fayer with a basket.
Foul shots accounted for eight Comets points as Roule went four-for-four in the first half.
“Kate’s been stepping up the last few games. Between her and Kam Dziak, we usually get one of the two scoring,” Collins said. “We’re trying to get a little more balance, but Kate’s been stepping up. She’s probably our most improved player from summer-fall.”
The second half was controlled by Amherst from the start, featuring 19 team rebounds.
Tori Small tallied five of her own while Hall went to work scoring. Hall scored six times in the half and once for good luck from the foul line in the 41-33 third quarter Amherst lead and 63-49 final score.
The Bulldogs scored just five points in the third quarter and were unable to recover in the fourth. Kelly was Olmsted Falls’ go-to shooter in the fourth with four baskets and hitting three-of-three from the free throw line.
Once again the leading Comets scorer in the game with 18 points and eight rebounds was Roule. “She’s one of those kids you’re thankful for everyday she’s on your team. She’s a hard worker,” said Collins.
“That’s the big thing this year — she’s become our leader. She gotten us into good spots. She gets things under control. At the end of the game she wants the ball in her hands.”
Hall shot for 16 points and made eight rebounds, Iliff had 12 points and four rebounds, Dziak had eight points (two of them three-pointers), Kelsey Gonos five, Fayer three, and Tori Small kicked in a free throw and eight rebounds.
Photos by Carl Sullenberger | Amherst News-Times Sydney Roule continues to show leadership on the court and in scoring and rebounding. Roule had 18 points and eight rebounds in Saturday’s 63-49 win over the Olmsted Falls Bulldogs.