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The McKinney girls basketball team celebrated its first win in three years Saturday, Feb. 3. From left: Coach Kevin Matteson, Malini Miller, Violet Matteson, Olivia Ward, Kylee Reichelderfer-Wolff, Piper Millhoan, Sage Oberg and Coach Rena Balzer. (Photo by Jyoti Miller)

Bulldog Sports Round-Up | Feb. 9, 2024

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BASKETBALL

Two losses for varsity boys

The boys varsity team fell to conference rivals and current first-place holders in the Metro Buckeye Conference, Miami Valley School, 37–59, on Friday, Feb. 2.

Senior Isaac Grushon led the team in scoring with 10 points, followed by freshman Mason Cline with eight points and  junior Landon Harris with seven. Harris, junior Kaveeyon Wagner and senior Jake Ortiz-Thornton all hustled for rebounds, netting five each.

Another loss followed Saturday, Feb. 3, with the boys trailing in a close game against National Trail, 53–60. Individual stats for the game were not available at press time.

The boys head into their last four games of the season with a conference record of 0–8 and an overall season record of 3–15.

A triumph for McKinney girls

Though the McKinney Bulldogs fell 12–45 to rivals Dayton Christian on Thursday, Feb. 1, the girls finished their season on a high note with a 20–19 win against Dominion on Saturday, Feb. 3 — a major victory for both the season and for the team’s last several years.

“We scored each half and came out victorious!” wrote Coach Rena Balzer this week, noting that the game constituted the team’s “first win in [her] three years of coaching [McKinney] basketball.”

Balzer continued: “We had the ball in the final nine seconds; all we had to do was hold onto that possession and we would win the game. After we called that time-out, the team maintained possession — it was iffy there for a couple seconds with loose balls. But the crowd was electric and the air was pulsing, just waiting for those final seconds to tick off the clock.  At the buzzer the crowd went wild, the team threw the ball up in the air and screams of joy and jumping around ensued; what a sight to see!  These girls killed it by keeping their composure in a tight score situation and I am super proud of them!”

In addition to winning the game, Balzer wrote, the girls met many of the goals they had set for the evening, including scoring in all four quarters and focusing on defensive strengths.

“Every player is finding their role, whether it is on the offensive side or the defensive side of the game,” Balzer wrote. “It took everyone doing their jobs to win this game.”

Balzer also noted that player Piper Millhoan scored her first points of the season during the game, and Malini Miller had a career high that night, with 16 points.

Mini-basketball stats for both games:

• Feb. 1 — Miller for rebound points, Rythme Greene for hustle points, and Olivia Ward for leadership points.

• Feb. 3 — Violet Matteson for rebound points, Greene for hustle points, Miller for leadership points.

Though the final game of the season, set to be played Feb. 5, was forfeited due to illness, the McKinney girls team is no doubt proud to close their season with a hard-fought and well-deserved win. Go Bulldogs!

BOWLING

Boys finish season in second place

The varsity boys bowling team ended the season with a win, solidifying second place in the Metro Buckeye Conference as they conquered Middletown Christian on Monday, Feb. 5, 1,918 pins to 1,739.

Sophomore Jaxyn Fletcher was the top scorer for the match, scoring 346 across two regular games. Close behind was junior Zander Baisden, with 338.

The Bulldogs finished the season with a conference record of 5–3 and an overall record of 6–4.

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