NR GBK

Brooke Lime’s game-high 14 points helped carry the North Ridgeville girls basketball team to a road win at Lakewood on Dec. 29.

It wouldn’t be considered a work of art, but it was a win.

Wedged between two holiday weeks and with COVID-19 still factoring into its schedule, the North Ridgeville girls basketball team could live with such a result.

Scoring runs in the middle of the game, coupled with timely defensive stops, were enough to beat Lakewood on the road, 49-31, on Dec. 29.

“We did enough to get the job done,” Rangers coach Amy Esser said. “With any kind of game over break, you get sloppy, you have days off, you’re getting the Christmas cookies out of your system, so it’s about scrapping to get through the game.”

Then there was the virus, looming large over so many teams across the state as games have been postponed or outright canceled since the season began in November. The Rangers recently lost two players for a stretch due to COVID, then were forced to postpone games against Padua on Dec. 15 and Avon on Dec. 18.

Their game at Lakewood was only their third in as many weeks.

“It’s just getting the rust off, getting everything going,” Esser said.

The visiting Rangers (7-2) shot 34% from the floor and committed 19 turnovers due to errors both unforced and forced as the host Rangers (4-3) showed tenacity on defense. Still, sophomores Brooke Lime and Grace Kingery each scored 14 points, including four of the team’s six 3-point makes.

Lime, in particular, gave her team some much-needed cushion in the third quarter when she hit threes on back-to-back possessions to key an 8-0 run, upping the lead to 37-20 in the opening minutes.

“I just felt confident in my shot and my teammates got me the ball,” Lime said.

Junior Laney Rumancik scored seven points off the bench, and senior Daylan Baker added six points and team-highs in rebounds (6), assists (4) and steals (4).

Ahead 17-12 after the first quarter, back-to-back 3-pointers from Kingery and Rumancik to start the second quarter gave their team a double-digit lead over Lakewood that would last throughout the rest of the game. The score was 31-20 at halftime.

Defensively, North Ridgeville coaxed Lakewood into 18 turnovers and 21% shooting. After scoring 12 points in the first frame, Lakewood was held to 19 points during the game’s final 24 minutes and nearly went the entire third quarter without scoring. Buckets by Mollie Henrikson and Samantha Hudak ended the drought with two minutes to go.

“We used lots of traps, helped over, got rebounds,” Lime said. “We all just worked hard together and talked through it.”

Hudak and Sydney Hampton led Lakewood with five points apiece, while Jacquie Hudak had four points and a team-high seven rebounds off the bench. On a positive note, the team outrebounded North Ridgeville 30-28 and held a 14-5 advantage on the offensive glass.

“Defensively we had a few letdowns,” Lakewood coach Julie Work said. “(North Ridgeville) has knockdown shooters, and you can’t leave shooters like that open. We had kids hitting shots that we didn’t see hitting them on film. And when we’re not making shots, that’s not helpful.”

North Ridgeville will return to Southwestern Conference play today when it hosts rival Midview at 7 p.m. Lakewood will wade back into Great Lakes Conference East play when it welcomes Valley Forge tonight at 7 p.m.

Contact this reporter at sports@westlifenews.com or 440-871-5797.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.