There was little chance coach Nathan Reck and the East Buchanan girls basketball team would take Edgewood-Colesburg lightly this time. After suffering an upset loss to the Vikings last year, the Lady Bucs made sure there would not be a repeat performance, racing to a 22-0 lead on the way to a dominating 64-16 win.
East Buchanan improved to 6-2 on the season, while Ed-Co dropped to 1-8, with its November win over Clayton Ridge a distant memory.
The Vikings were double-digit in the turnover column by the time Lily Aulwes hit a jumper from the right wing to get Ed-Co on the board with 1:40 remaining in the first quarter. When Ella Aulwes scored from three-point range as the period ended, it was East Buchanan leading the Aulwes sisters 25-5 after one.
Freshman post Annie Hoffman’s baseline jumper accounted for Ed-Co’s only points of the second period, and East Buchanan’s relentless pressure made life miserable for the Vikings as the Bucs led 40-7 at the half.
“Their press really got to us,” said Ed-Co coach Jenny Lange. “This is an obstacle we are going to have to get figured out and figured out fast.”
When the Lady Bucs scored the first basket of the third quarter after yet another Ed-Co turnover, the lead was 35 points — putting the continuous clock rule into play.
After the lead stretched to 50-7, the Vikings had a mild flurry of scoring as Chezney Priem hit a triple and Haley Fitzpatrick scored on a putback to make it 50-12. A fourth-quarter free throw by Natalie Wessel and a late three-pointer by Alex Schmitz completed the Ed-Co scoring.
“I am disappointed in how we played,” said Lange. “We can’t keep turning the ball over 30 times a game and expect to win.”
The Vikings dropped an early-week contest at Springville, 61-33, as the defending Class 1A State Champions opened up an 11-2 lead after a quarter and cruised to an easy win — improving to 7-1 in the process.
Ed-Co played a competitive second quarter to trail 27-14 at the break, but a decisive 21-7 Oriole blitz in the third quarter put things out of reach at 48-21.
Haley Fitzpatrick had a nice double-double for Ed-Co — 14 points and 14 rebounds — to pace the Viking effort.
“We did some rearranging and tried some new things,” said Lange. “Even though we didn’t come up with a win, I was pleased with how everyone adjusted to their new roles, stepped up, and played hard.”
Ed-Co leaders against Springville were: scoring — Fitzpatrick 14, Ella Aulwes, Lily Aulwes and Liz Meisner four, Bailee Helle, Hoffman and Kelsey Hansel two, Wessel one; assists — Priem three, Lily Aulwes two, Meisner and Helle one; rebounds — Fitzpatrick 14, Hoffman four, Priem, Helle and Hansel three, Lily Aulwes and Meisner two, Ella Aulwes and Wessel one; steals — Priem four, Lily Aulwes and Meisner three, Ella Aulwes and Wessel two, Fitzpatrick one; blocks — Helle and Hansel one.