Second-quarter Struggles Strike Spartans Again in Loss to Williamsburg

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Photo by Jeff Yoder

Ryan Murken

Your Prep Sports

SOLON – As the minutes ticked away toward halftime on Tuesday first-year Solon head coach Jamie Smith had to feel a little bit like he was watching a rerun.

For the third consecutive game Smith watched as a strong start for the Spartans turned into a second-quarter struggle.

Williamsburg outscored Solon 17-2 in the second quarter, closing the first half on a 14-0 run on its way to a 61-50 win over the Spartans in a WAMAC Conference cross-divisional matchup in Solon.

The loss was the eighth straight for Solon and dropped the Spartans to 2-11 on the season and 2-9 in WAMAC play while Williamsburg improved to 6-8 and 4-7 in WAMC action.

“We’ve scored two points in the last three games in the second quarter,” Smith began before pausing. “That’s obviously something we have to get fixed.”

In its previous two games Solon trailed Mount Vernon by a point and led West Delaware by two points after one quarter before being sunk by scoreless second quarters.

It was another second-quarter offensive lull that doomed the Spartans on Tuesday.

Solon took a 14-13 lead on a steal and layup by freshman Makinley Levin with 4:06 to play in the first half but didn’t score again in the quarter.

Williamsburg scored the final 14 points of the half, all in the final 3:40, to take a 27-14 lead into the locker room.

Solon was 1-of-11 from the field and committed seven of its 23 turnovers in the second quarter.

“We turned it over seven times and then you don’t get shots and they score off of those turnovers and then you drop your head a little bit,” Smith said. “The turnovers are devastating sometimes mentally.

Solon trailed 43-25 after three quarters but wouldn’t go away without a fight.

The Spartans matched their scoring output from the first 24 minutes with a 25-point fourth quarter.

Solon twice had chances into the final quarter to cut the deficit to single digits but the Raiders had an answer each time.

“Five weeks ago a situation like that where we are ahead in the first quarter and score two points in the second quarter we would have been done when we got down 18,” Smith said. “Tonight we kept playing but you can’t wait that long.”

Levin scored nine of her team-high 15 points in the fourth quarter while fellow freshman Ava Stebral and junior Jenna LaDage each had nine.

LaDage led the Spartans with nine rebounds.

“We came back and I thought we played hard the second half,” Smith said. “We scored 36 points in the second half and we had a couple of stretches where we could have cut the lead a little more. I’m not happy about it but I did see some improvement,” Smith said. “We didn’t put it all together.”

Jill Holub had a game-high 16 points to pace Williamsburg while Charlotte Wetjen had 14 points for the Raiders.

Solon                12   2   11  25  –  50

Williamsburg    10  17  16  18  –  61

Solon (50) – Ava Stebral 3-8 0-2 9, Saige Hauer 0-2 0-0 0, Kaia Holtkamp 2-8 3-4 7, Makinley Levin 3-11 8-11 15, Jenna LaDage 3-7 2-2 9, Ellie Holubar 2-3 3-5 7, Jada Buffington 1-5 1-2 3, Totals 14-44 17-26 50.

Williamsburg (61) – Charlotte Wetjen 5-16 3-3 14, Jill Holub 6-12 4-4 16, Erin Francis 0-1 0-0 0, Teagan Schaefer 0-1 0-0 0, Emily Jensen 4-6 0-0 8, Kendra Eichhorn 3-5 2-5 8, Taylor Winegarden 3-3 0-2 6, Mackenzie O’Neil 2-5 2-4 8, Lydia Rethwisch 0-5 1-2 1, Totals 23-54 12-20 61.

3-point field goals – SOL 5-23 (Stebral 3-8, Holtkamp 0-3, Levin 1-5, LaDage 1-5, Buffington 0-2), WB 3-5 (Wetjen 1-3, O’Neil 2-2). Rebounds – SOL 30 (LaDage 9), WB 45 (Holub 11). Turnovers – SOL 23, WB 21. Total fouls – SOL 18, WB 21. Fouled out – None. Technical fouls – None.