WILMINGTON — It was quite the senior sendoff Saturday for Wilmington seniors Maura Drake and Chailyn Johns as they, along with sophomore Katie Murphy’s 23 points, helped the Hurricane blow past Blanchester 66-33 at Fred Summers Court.
“I’m very proud of the seniors. They’ve come a long way,” Wilmington head coach Zach Williams said about the duo who played their last game on Fred Summers Court Saturday. “Maura Drake has made leaps and bounds (improvements) through her career. These last two or three games have really shown that. She’s really starting to come out of her shell and be a consistent solid player for us. I’m so happy for her. And Chailyn Johns, I’m glad she came back this year. She has brought a very good dynamic to our team, some toughness, great passing and vision. I’m just proud of the effort they’ve given this whole season.”
Drake finished with 12 points and Johns ended the game with 11. They, along with Murphy, were an integral part of a 9-0 run at the start the fourth quarter, which built Wilmington’s largest cushion of the afternoon to that point, 59-22 with 4:33 left in the game.
Drake sparked the run with a bucket inside. Murphy then hit the last of her five from behind the arc. Then Johns hit Drake in stride with a three-quarter-court pass for a layup. Johns capped the run with a drive for two more.
After a pair of Blanchester buckets, Murphy found Drake for two more and Johns found Madison Schuster with another home run pass to push Wilmington’s lead back to 37, 63-26 with 2:09 left in the game.
The Hurricane (9-8) started hot, scoring the game’s first 20 points. Ten of them were of the second-chance variety and five more came off Blanchester turnovers. Wilmington led 23-3 after the first quarter.
Wilmington only extended its lead by a point in the second quarter, taking a 37-16 advantage into the intermission. Blan (3-14) kept pace, in part, because of scoring seven points off four Wilmington turnovers early in the period. Blan’s Kaylee Coyle also had six of her team-high 16 points in the quarter.
The Hurricane lead reached 30 after an 11-2 run to start the third quarter, 48-18 at the 1:40 mark.
The 66 points Saturday was Wilmington’s most in a game this year, eclipsing the 63 it scored three days earlier at Goshen.
Wilmington begins its second season at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday vs. Cincinnati Seton at Lakota East High School.
According to the Blanchester athletics webpage, the Wildcats wrapped up their regular season at Wilmington. They will start tournament play at 5:30 p.m. Feb. 18 at Fairfield High School versus the winner of the Williamsburg-Deer Park matchup Feb. 15.
Feb 6, 2021
@Fred Summers Court
Wilmington 66 Blanchester 33
(33) BLANCHESTER (fg-ft-tp) Winemiller 2-0-4, L. Roy 2-2-6, Potts 2-1-5, Whitaker 0-0-0, Staehling 0-0-0, Tipton, 0-0-0, G. Roy 0-0-0, Coyle 7-1-16, Wells 0-2-2, Pohlman 0-0-0, Panetta 0-0-0. Total 13-6-33. 3-point goals: 1 (Coyle). FTM-FTA 6-8, 75 percent.
(66) WILMINGTON (fg-ft-tp) Schuster 2-0-5, Robinson 4-0-8, Johns 4-0-11, Drake 6-0-12, Murphy 9-0-23, Smith 0-0-0, Current 2-0-5, Walker 0-2-2. Total 27-4-66. 3-point goals: 10 (Murphy 5, Johns 3, Current, Schuster). FTM-FTA 2-5, 40 percent.
Shawn Robinson covers high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @twinzdad01.