Mohawk, Clyde gobble up wins to open season

CLYDE – New Mohawk coach Mike Beck had a plan for his defense.

He was just waiting for the right time to use it.

The Warriors led all of the first half, but after taking a 18-9 second quarter advantage, watched as Columbian clawed back to make it 18-14 at halftime.

TC’s Valesha Province then opened the third quarter by drilling a 3 from the top of the key, and the Tornadoes were within a point.

And then, Beck had his team trap.

The Tornadoes turned the ball over seven times against the Mohawk ball pressure, and the Warriors went on a run of their own, going on a 9-2 run to take control.

The Warriors led 31-21 after three quarters, and beat the Tornadoes 41-30.

In the night’s second game at the Clyde Turkey Shootout, Clyde dismantled Lakota, 95-20. The Warriors and Fliers will meet in Saturday’s second game, following Columbian and the Raiders.

Beck said making the switch defensively was a question of timing.

“We’ve got our press package in, and we were just trying to decide at what time of the game to come with it,” Beck said. “It was our halfcourt trap, and we thought that’d be good for us tonight. I thought it worked out for us pretty well.”

It didn’t work out too well for the Tornadoes.

“That 1-3-1 halfcourt trap did cause us trouble,” said Columbian coach Katie Fazekas. “With experience I have confidence that my guards will figure that out early in the the season.”

Mohawk was led by Kasey Adelsperger, who scored more than half of her team’s points with 21, and led the squad with eight rebounds.

“Each week that we practice, she gets, I’m told – because I wasn’t here last year – back to her normal form,” Beck said. “She seems healthier and more active each week.”

Julie Adelsperger was the only other Warrior to score in double figures. She had 10.

Columbian’s Valesha Province paced her team’s scoring with 16 points. The Tornadoes made all six of their free throws, but were out-rebounded 39-24.

Province had seven boards.

“She’s put more work in than any kid I’ve ever coached in 10 years,” Fazekas said of Province. “So, she’s gonna come up big for us. At the same time, we need everybody else to pick up the offensive slack as well.”

In the second game, Lakota coach Mike Miller said he knew it would be a challenge.

In fact, he acknowledged Thursday’s game – his squad’s first of the year – would be the toughest.

Clyde got 18 points each from Amanda Cahill and Kelsey Michaels, and had enough points by the end of the first quarter to beat the Raiders.

But the Fliers kept scoring and scoring and scoring.

“Even our girls knew, they’re not dumb, they knew this was gonna be a real tough game,” Miller said.

The Fliers led 30-10 after one quarter, then outscored the Raiders 27-3 in the second.

Clyde got scoring from up and down its roster, with five players scoring eight points or more.

“We got a lot of kids involved, I thought we shared the ball pretty well,” Clyde coach John Cahill said. “We’ve scrimmaged so tough, a lot of the best teams in the state, it’s just difficult to go from that to a young, building team like Lakota. But they’re trying to do the right things.”

Katie Park had eight points to lead the Raiders.

“(My players) weren’t discouraged. They kept playing the whole game,” Miller said. “I’ve got to applaud them for that.”

It was the first game for all four teams.