Free throws lift Braves

For the Tribune


In Friday night’s girls basketball game between Brownstown Central and Mitchell, free-throw shooting was a make or break for both teams.

Despite going 22-for 34 for the game, the Braves hit more free throws (12) than field goals (2) in the fourth quarter which helped them prevail

56-47 against the Bluejackets.

Mitchell also had its troubles from the foul line by going 5-for-16.

“When you look in the fourth quarter we made more free throws than field goals made,” Braves Coach Karla Rieckers said.

“I would put us on the free-throw line at anytime. I would take my chances because we have the kids who can knock them down.”

In the early going, the Braves jumped out to a 7-2 lead as Brooke Ebbing, Jaelyn Reynolds and Morgan Wehmiller all contributed from the floor.

The Bluejackets, scored the next six to take an 8-7 lead, but the Braves closed out the first quarter on a 7-0 run as Bailey Bonebright had a basket, Olivia Goecker had an offensive rebound put back and Morgan Wehmiller drained a three-pointer at the buzzer for the 14-8 lead.

The Braves scored the first seven of the second quarter to up their lead to 21-11 and they never looked back as they outscored the Bluejackets 16-9 in the

quarter and led 30-17

at halftime.

“We talked about having a strong start,” Rieckers said. “It was a very physical game and I thought it was a sloppy game on our part. We had 22 turnovers for the game and at halftime we had 14.

“I thought that was not necessarily forced turnovers, but thought we were making bad decisions with the basketball and forcing some passes that were not there. We have to continue to get better every week.”

Mitchell cut the Brownstown lead to five points in the third quarter, but the home team found some momentum and regained an 11-point lead, 40-29 after three quarters. In the fourth quarter, Mitchell’s Taylin Moore scored 10 of her 18 points as her team outscored the Braves 18-17.

Ebbing led the Braves (3-0) with 21 points on six made field goals and was 8 of 10 from the free-throw line. Wehmiller added 18 for the Braves.

Danielle Pruett was next for the Bluejackets (2-2) with 11 points.

The Braves out-rebounded the Bluejackets, 32-23 as Wischmeier led with nine.

“We missed some easy shots, but if you get a little nudge or bump it’s hard to follow through and make that shot,” Rieckers said. “We can’t go against Columbus East and against Seymour and have 22 turnovers and come out with a win.

The Braves will travel to Columbus to face the Olympians on Tuesday.