Newton girls advance to district semifinals with win


TROTWOOD — Newton girls basketball coach Ryan Fiely emerged from the locker room looking for a dry shirt Thursday night.

He had just received a shower from his team after the Lady Indians rallied in the second half for a 52-42 win over Yellow Springs in Trotwood-Madison D-IV action.

“It was definitely worth it,” Fiely said with a smile.

Newton, 9-14, advanced to Saturday’s district semifinal and will play top seed Tri-Village at 12:30 p.m. Yellow Springs drops to 15-6 on the season.

Newton had one thought coming into the game on defense.

Make Yellow Spring guard Angie Smith work for everything she got.

And at halftime, trailing 27-20 after the Bulldogs hits six 3-pointers in the first half to erase a 13-5 deficit, Fiely didn’t blink.

“We didn’t want Angie Smith to control the game,” Fiely said. “We basically wanted to make her work and wear her down. We came in with a game plan. They hit those threes — they can be streaky like that. But, I told the girls at halftime, I wasn’t sure they could keep hitting them.”

With the dominance of Layla VanCulin and Mercedes Craig inside, the Indians took control in the third quarter.

It took Newton just two minutes to tie the game at 29 and with Craig and VanCulin combining for 16 points in the third quarter and 21 in the second half and grabbing 26 rebounds in the game, Newton took control.

“That was huge (to come out and tie it so quickly),” Fiely said. “Mercedes (Craig) and Layla (VanCulin) can really rebound. They can shoot, they just don’t have the confidence they should. But, they can hit the boards.”

The Indians were up 41-35 going to the fourth quarter and midway through the fourth quarter a basket by Reese Hess, two free throws by VanCulin and another basket by Hess had Newton up 48-37.

“It felt like a one-point game,” Fiely said. “I looked up and we were leading by 11. That felt great. Reese can rebound and we were able to get some backdoor baskets on drives. Emma (Szakal) did a great job, she was playing centerfield on our defense (of Smith). Camryn (Gleason) didn’t have her normal shooting game, but she did a lot of things to help us win. Brooke (Hines) hit a big 3-pointer in the first half.”

VanCulin led the Indians with 15 points and 14 rebounds.

Craig added 13 points and 12 rebounds.

Gleason had seven points and five assists and Hess added seven points and three assists.

Szakal had five points and four assists and Hines scored five points.

Corinne Totty led Yellow Springs with 18 points, including five 3-pointers.

Smith scored 14 and Aaliyah Longshow scored eight points.

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