COLUMBIANA - The Crestview girls basketball team may have lost 56-40 against United last night, but Rebels coach Rick Gates has not lost hope for the rest of the season.
"I try to stress to the girls it is a long season," Gates said. "This is our third league game and there's a lot to go."
Both teams entered the match undefeated 2-0 in the Inter Tri-County League upper tier. This was Crestview's second loss of the season giving them a 5-2, 2-1 record and United a 6-1, 3-0 record.
"We don't feel we played very well tonight," Gates said. "I give a lot of credit to United; they did."
United got a four point jump on Crestview within 35 seconds of the start of the game with back-to-back baskets from Sam Spitler and Emily Zehentbauer .
The first quarter ended 15-10 United up but Crestview held the Eagles to 7 points in the second quarter and the half ended with Crestview trailing by two, 22-20.
"When we rattled United a little bit, they held together and passed the ball extremely well," Gates said.
The Eagles had some ups-and-downs in the first half that they need to clean up, United coach Sam Mathias said.
"Overall, they stayed focused, especially when Crestview pressed us in the second half," Mathias said. "We made the good decisions and went right down the floor to score on them."
United junior Cassidy Yoder scored seven baskets in the second half off cross court assists from Taylor Smith, Devon Ritchie and a couple other teammates. Crestview would press leaving Yoder wide open under the basket then a down court pass to Smith followed by a quick bounce to Yoder was often all it took for United to put another two points on the board.
"Taylor and I work really well together," Yoder said. "Whenever she got the ball on the opposite side, I flashed back and she made great passes to me."
She commended her team for being selfless on the court.
Yoder lead United in scoring with 22 points, 10 rebounds and three steals. Zehentbauer scored 12 points and Spitler and Smith scored seven points apiece. Smith also had six assists and five rebounds. United's lone senior Ruth Prosko scored six points, led United in rebounds with 10 and dished out six assists as well.
Ashley Harrison was top scorer for the Rebels with 18 points. Chelsea Caudill had eight points and 12 rebounds. Marissa Leon had four steals, three assists and three blocked shots.
"We just didn't finish tonight," Gates said. "We had some good drives to the basket, we had some good play inside, good guard play, but we've got to finish shots if we're going to contend for the league."
United's jayvee also won. They beat Crestview 31-23.
MacKenzie Firth scored 11 points and had 15 rebounds for United and her teammate Allison Parks scored eight points.
Tristan Huff scored eight points for Crestview.
Both teams play again Monday. Crestview hosts Springfield and United hosts South Range.
CRESTVIEW 10-10-11-9: 40.
UNITED: 15-7-17-17: 56.
CRESTVIEW SCORING: Chelsea Caudill 3-2-8, Ashley Harrison 4-10-18, Morgan Newbauer 3-0-6, Alexis DeMaria 0-0-0, Gerie Sickle 1-2-4, Savannah Elwonger 0-0-0, Anna Hardenbrook 2-0-4, Marissa Leon 0-0-0, Alexis Marnejon 0-0-0, Alexys Brooks 0-0-0, Taylor Chamberlain 0-0-0, Allie Danks 0-0-0. TEAM TOTALS: 13, 14-18: 40.
UNITED SCORING: Preslee Johnson 0-0-0, Emily Zehentbauer 4-2-12, Sam Spitler 3-0-7, Tara Gray 1-0-2, Devon Ritchie 0-0-0, Allison Parks 0-0-0, MacKenzie Gatchel 0-0-0, Cassidy Yoder 10-2-22, Ruth Prosko 1-4-6, Taylor Smith 3-1-7. TEAM TOTALS: 22, 9-12: 56.
Three-point scoring: United 3 (Emily Zehentbauer 2, Sam Spitler).