By Will Willems
The Zionsville Lady Eagles gave it everything they had Tuesday night in their sectional opener against Noblesville.
But in the end the Millers’ size and defense was just too much. Noblesville broke open a close game with a 21-11 third quarter and topped the Eagles 61-22.
“I really thought we played one of our better games of the season,” Zionsville head coach Andy Maguire said. “The first half we were right there, we competed really well and we put ourselves in a good position only down four at the break. We knew they were going to come out hard and in the second half the press really hurt us. We weren’t strong enough in traps.”
Eagle junior Elizabeth Schuler hit a 3-pointer to open the scoring, but Noblesville scored the next nine points to grab a 9-3 lead and led 12-5 after a quarter.
The lead stayed there for most of the second quarter, but the Mary Baluyut’s jumper at the first half buzzer brought the Eagles within 22-18 after the first 16 minutes.
The second half was a different story.
Noblesville turned up the defensive intensity, starting the third quarter on a 16-4 run to go up 38-22 on a free throw by Jessica Kiser.
“All night we got the ball too low,” Maguire said. “We had a tendency to dribble back to where we just got it from. They were aggressive, they react to passes and cover things well. When we did reverse it, one pass out of it, we had some good opportunities, we just didn’t have enough of it.
The lead grew to as many as 19 at 43-24, but the Eagles had one last run in them.
For more of this story, read Wednesday's Lebanon Reporter.