Flora Hilderbran Commissioners to meet with DP&L officials New state graduation requirements called a ‘train wreck’ Catching up with Keller Senior Profile: Justin Knechtly Piketon size is too much for Lady Indians, Peebles falls in sectional finals Greyhounds grab Senior Night win Indians finish regular season riding six-game winning streak Harper, Hupp, Defense lead Lady Devils to fourth consecutive sectional championship West Union Elementary recognizes Students of the Month for January Second Healthy Hero awarded by Adams County Health and Wellness Coalition Coal company files to intervene in power plant closings Senior Profile: Jessica Sowards Senior Profile: Dennis Welch Dorothy E Walls Mabel Chamblin Michael R Jones Marie I Simmons Ray Johnson One thing to remember this President’s Day Adams County Deer Harvest down over 21% MLSD amends five-year budget, prepares for future with power plant closings Lady Dragons triumph in sectional opener Lady Hounds eighth graders capture SHAC Tournament title Gary L Fetters Sr Boys Sectional brackets released ‘We’re only as good as the way we treat others’ Another round of smiles Adams County Board of DD members recognized Terry L Unger 8th Grade Lady Devils ousted in tourney semis WU’s McCarty signs with Ohio Christian Joyce A Huddleson Carolyn Spires BREAKING NEWS: Peebles police search for man accused of selling marijuana-laced sweets Decision Time BBN Senior Profile: Summer Grundy Lady Devils fall to Southeastern, 56-48 Devils outlast Manchester 47-44 in double overtime Peebles holds second Hall of Fame Ceremony Senior Profile: Patrick England Sowards hits 1,000, ties PHS three-point mark County agencies prepare for sweeping budget cuts Manchester Council votes to cut police chief’s hours Wrestling debuts in Adams County Peebles Library hosts book signing As plants power down, community must step up Raymond P Dryden Alva Palmer Billie L Shoemaker Judith Long Brent A Arn Girls basketball sectional pairings announced WU’s Weeks will continue gridiron career at next level West Union JH Boys drop pair at Ripley Eighth Grade Lady Hounds roll into SHAC semi-finals Janet A Kennedy DP&L moving ahead with plans to close power plants Outreach Center in Peebles is a hub of giving River Sweep contest winners announced Gordley hits 1,000 mark, but Indians drop crucial SHAC contest to Lynchburg Manchester lifters compete at Piketon Senior Profile: Madelyn Sanders Charles L Hurd Randy Casto Bobby Strunk Dorothy J Scott Chester A Lanter Coach David Smalley picks up 500th career win at Rio Grande Dustin Holbrook Senior Profile: Camron Gordley As usual, optimism abounds on 2017 Reds Caravan Breeze, Beasley newest members of NAHS Athletic HOF Two humble men Adams County Manor Home Health Care makes road to recovery easier Don and Venita Bowles named as Outstanding Fair Supporters ‘Tip off For Tammy’ is a huge success, joint effort by two schools Husted campaign makes stop in Peebles Benefit held for double-lung transplant recipient I loved that muddy water, building in the creek Margaret E Broughton Larry A Hanson DP&L press release confirms closing of power plants Eighth grade girls showdown lives up to hype, North Adams wins in overtime, 45-43 Senior Profile: Raeanna Stamm North Adams Football sign-ups coming soon North Adams JV girls go 11-4 with win over Peebles Harper wins MaxPreps/JJHuddle Athlete of the Week West Union duo headed to the college gridiron Lady Devils make it 11 straight with win at Peebles Adams County residents attend Trump Inauguration A Look back at our Archives Peebles native comes home to film documentary Ohio Valley Wrestling Cub hosting home match on Jan. 31 Ruth A Branscome Velma Hughes Carol L Lewis Betty L Greiner Devils top New Boston 63-53 in finale of Coach Young Classic Lady Devils rout Eastern Pike in Young Classic

Lady Dragons take third place in McDonald’s Classic, topping Manchester 42-30

Rarely does a team that does not score a single point in the first quarter of a high school basketball game come out the winner, but the West Union Lady Dragons proved that wrong on Dec. 29 at North Adams High School in the consolation game of the 2015 McDonald’s Holiday Classic. Battling the Manchester Lady Greyhounds for the third place hardware, the Lady Dragons were shut out in the first quarter for the second game in succession, but rallied with a big 16-0 run over the second and third periods to come from behind and knock off the Lady Hounds 42-30.

“The last couple of years we haven’t been able to get a win in this tournament so it’s nice to finally win one,” West Union head coach Jason Claytor told C103 radio after the game. “We had more people here tonight than we might have in 4 or 5 games combined. We have two pretty good rivalries going on here.”

The Manchester defense was the story of the first eight minutes of action as their very active zone kept the Lady Dragons out of the paint and just as in the semi-final game with Peebles, West Union got very few open looks at the rim in the first period. Unfortunately for the Lady Hounds, they were not able to capitalize on their own offensive end, scoring just six points of their own in the opening quarter, getting two baskets from C.J. Hobbs in the first three minutes, then after nearly a five-minute drought for both sides, a Morgan Johnson bucket in the final seconds gave Manchester the 6-0 lead.

“Manchester came out in that 1-3-1 zone which I didn’t expect it all and it stifled us in that first quarter,” said Coach Claytor.

West Union finally got on the board in the opening minute of the second quarter when Alex Pennington hit a pair from the foul line, but two free throws by Manchester’s Kylie Lucas and a coast to coast score by Johnson put the Hounds up 10-2, but that was to be the end of the Manchester offense for the next 10 minutes of play.

A three-pointer from Pennington began a 14-0 run for the Lady Dragons to close out the first half. A pair of freshmen, Pennington and Jaycee Baldwin did the damage with Pennington adding two more baskets plus another trey while Baldwin hit a pair of buckets in the paint as the Lady Dragons surged in front for good, leading 16-10 at the intermission.

“We got ball movement and player movement in the second quarter and that was something we preach over and over,” said Claytor. “We let the ball find the open girl.”

No one scored for the first 90 seconds of the third quarter before a pair of Mikayla Akers free throws extended the West Union run to 16-0 and their lead to eight points. Finally, after nearly ten minutes of offensive futility, Johnson went to the charity stripe and canned two shots to make it 18-12.

In the third quarter as a whole, neither team did much offensive damage as they combined for just 11 total points. A basket by Akers gave the Lady Dragons back their eight-point advantage, but Johnson countered with the “basket and one” to keep her team within striking distance at 20-15. The final basket of the third stanza came at the 1:52 mark by West Union’s Kristen Grooms, sending the teams to the final period with West Union up 22-15.

Any hope that the Lady Hounds had of a come-from-behind fourth quarter win were extinguished quickly as West Union scored the first 9 points of the period, driving a dagger on back-to-back possessions with nothing but net three-pointers from McKenzie Kirker and Akers. An offensive rebound and score by Johnson temporarily stopped the run of the Lady Dragons, but Akers dialed long distance from the corner this time to give her team a comfortable 34-17 lead.

Two free throws by Kiersten Rowe stretched the lead to its longest of the game at 36-17, before the Lady Hounds showed some resiliency with a pair of free throws from freshman McKenzie Smith and a Johnson three with just over four minutes to play.

Johnson converted another three-point play with 2:32 to play that made it 37-25 but the Lady Hounds were just running out of time. West union sealed the deal for good with a quick 5-0 run capped by a Kendall Gallowitz basket and even with Manchester’s Hobbs getting the final two buckets of the game, it wasn’t enough as the third place trophy headed for the case at West Union High School with a 42-30 Lady Dragons victory.

“We just need to be consistent,” said Coach Claytor. “We can’t have first quarters like we had tonight and get away with it very often. We’ve got to be consistent in our execution on both ends and I thought tonight was one of our best defensive efforts since I became coach here.

In the consolation win that upped their season record to 5-5 on the year, the Lady Dragons placed two players in double figures, led by 13 points from Alexa Pennington and 12 from Mikayla Akers. Kristen Grooms and Jaycee Baldwin each scored 5 points for the winners.

The Lady Hounds, who again had just 8 players available for Coach Jacie Simon, dropped to 1-9 on the season, and were led in scoring in the loss by Morgan Johnson, who gives every ounce of effort from start to finish, and had 18 of the 30 Manchester points in the consolation defeat. The improving C.J. Hobbs scored 8 for the Lady Hounds.

Both teams will be back in action as school resumes at the start of a New Year. West Union will play two non-conference games, hosting Blanchester on Jan. 4 and then traveling to Northwest on Jan. 6, before coming back home on Jan. 7 to face the unbeaten Lynchburg Lady Mustangs in Southern Hills Athletic Conference play.

The Lady Hounds are off until Jan. 7 when they make the very long bus ride to Fairfield High School to battle the Lady Lions, looking to avenge a 64-39 defeat on Dec. 10.

MHS 6 4 5 15 —30

WUHS 0 16 6 20 —42

MHS (30): Smith 0 2-2 2, Johnson 6 5-6 18, Hobbs 4 0-4 8, Lucas 0 2-4 2, Team 10 9-18 30.

WUHS (42): Baldwin 2 1-4 5, Kirker 1 0-1 3, Akers 4 2-2 12, Rowe 0 2-2 2, Grooms 1 3-4 5, Gallowitz 1 0-0 2, Pennington 4 3-8 13, Team 13 11-21 42.

Three-Point Goals:

MHS- Johnson 1

WUHS- Kirker 1, Akers 2, Pennington 2

By virtue of their 42-30 win over Manchester on Dec. 29, the West Union Lady Dragons claimed the third place trophy in the 2015 McDonald’s Holiday Classic.
http://www.peoplesdefender.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/web1_WUHSgirls1.jpgBy virtue of their 42-30 win over Manchester on Dec. 29, the West Union Lady Dragons claimed the third place trophy in the 2015 McDonald’s Holiday Classic. Mark Carpenter | People’s Defender
West Union 42 Manchester 30

By Mark Carpenter

mcarpenter@civitasmedia.com

Reach Mark Carpenter at 937-544-2391 or on Twitter @adamscosports.

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