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Tiger girls on brink of league title

By STEVE BATKO Correspondent Published: February 15, 2017 12:00 AM
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Twinsburg girls basketball is in a strong position to have its senior class finish the regular season with a big win at home, gain a share of a league championship, and have the vision for a blue print to reach districts in post season tournament play.

With a 16-5 overall record, Twinsburg is 12-1 in league play and is tied with Stow-Munroe Falls atop the standings in the Suburban League National Conference as of press time

Twinsburg hosts Cuyahoga Falls Feb. 15 in the final league game, while Stow-Munroe Falls (18-3) plays at North Royalton (8-12, 5-8).

The Black Tigers (11-10) are 4-9 in the league. The Falls clash is the final regular season game for Twinsburg.

"We had a close one at their place (56-48 win) earlier, so we will see," said head coach Julie Solis. "The Falls program has really improved."

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Solis saw her team recently earn the second seed in the Euclid Division I sectional-district tournament behind powerful Solon (19-2).

In first round action, Twinsburg will host 11th-seeded Cleveland John F. Kennedy Feb. 18 at 1 p.m.

"I like the way [the brackets]worked out," said Solis.

The first-round winner will play in the sectional final Feb. 23 at 7p.m. against eight seed Cleveland John Hay.

John Hay, 16-5 overall, also plays in the top-heavy Senate League along with JFK (6-11).

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The higher seed would host the game, which means Twinsburg would likely play at home until the Feb. 27 district semifinals at Euclid.

"John Hay is pretty good and we have to play our game," Solis said. I think we have turned a corner with playing hard.

Shaker Heights and Bedford, the fourth and fifth seeds, respectively, loom in the above sectional bracket opposite the Tigers. Shaker is 11-11 against a decent schedule and Bedford is 14-7.

Maple Heights was the third seed and is 16-6 overall. Maple and Solon have first round byes in the upper part of the Euclid brackets.

"Bedford and Shaker is tough to say, but I do know Shaker didn't have their best player," noted Solis, of the 61-43 Tiger win over the Red Raiders Feb. 6.

Randy Thomas is the head coach at Shaker and was an assistant under Solis several years ago.

A 10-2 run to open the game sparked a big lead for Twinsburg in an easy 68-34 league win in Macedonia Feb. 8 against a solid Nordonia team.

Senior forward Dasja Anderson had an outstanding game against the young Knights (11-10, 7-6), who were the seventh seed at Euclid.

Anderson, a versatile 5-foot-10 athlete, scored a team-high 15 points, played strong defense, and helped on the glass.

Point guard Jailyn Reid also excelled as the senior popped in 13 points, hit one 3-pointer, and had a strong floor game.

Forward Jasmine Bishop also scored 11 points as the senior continues to do well for the Lady Tigers.

Sophomore guard Nya Bussey added seven points and strong defense, and freshman wing Alana Ellis netted six points.

Senior guard Shaundrea Butler chipped in four points as did sophomore forward Kyndall Hill and junior forward Brittany Jolly. Junior Trinity Carthen added three points and sophomore Briana Jones added one.

"Our offense has been inconsistent at times, but everything is positive heading into the playoffs," said Solis.

Gifted Nordonia guard Soleil Barnes exploded for a game-high 24 points, but the rest of the Knight squad was held to just four field goals by an intense Tiger defense.

Email: mleonard@recordpub.com

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