“It’s unbelievable,” Versailles coach Jackie Stonebraker said. “When you look back … I don’t know how to explain it. These girls have risen to the challenge. They had high expectations year in and year out. I don’t think that comes from the coaching staff as much as it comes from the community. To have those high expectations and to be able to perform at that level is an incredible thing.”
ALTER ADVANCES: Knights take out Ottawa-Glandorf in D-II semi
Averaging just five points, Camille Watren popped three 3-pointers in the first quarter to ignite a rout of Eastern (26-2), which is located in Brown County west of Cincinnati. Watren and Danielle Winner each had 14 points to lead the Tigers. Elizabeth Ording and Kami McEldowney added 11 each in a balanced attack.
Versailles juniors Danielle Winner (left) and Kami McEldowney were key in a 58-34 defeat of Winchester Brown in a girls high school basketball D-III state semifinal at OSU's Schottenstein Center on Friday, March 17, 2017.
“We have an awesome program going,” McEldowney said with a nod to the half-dozen sets of siblings among the Tigers. “It’s amazing. It’s so fun.”
Allison Day led Eastern with 11 points.
KEY POINTS: Doesn’t get any better than this
Versailles is on an 11-game win streak and has lost only to Fort Loramie, Tippecanoe and Minster. Versailles defeated Ottawa-Glandorf in the 2015 D-III title game and lost to Africentric in the ’14 championship.
Anchored in Cuyahoga County, it’ll be the first time Gilmour Academy has played for a state title. The Lancers’ only other final four was last season.
Stonebraker is counting on more of the same for Versailles, which also won a state title in 2008.
“They push each other every day in practice,” said Stonebraker, a 1995 Versaille graduate. “That’s the key. They never let down from freshmen all the way to seniors. They always want to be better. That’s the morale we have and hopefully it stays because it’s a lot of fun. It’s been a good ride.”
FACEBOOK: For more high school sports you should like Marc Pendleton
View photos and video at MyDaytonDailyNews.com