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Ryle girls’ basketball team rebounds from setback with win against Cooper in district seeding game

By Terry Boehmker
NKyTribune sports reporter

After a frustrating loss to Dixie Heights in double overtime on Friday, the Ryle girls’ basketball team had to get its act together in a hurry for a 33rd District seeding game at Cooper on Saturday.

“Coach (Katie Haitz) told us we had to be mentally ready,” said Ryle point guard Maddie Scherr. “It’s a huge district game and we always have that rivalry with Cooper so we had to be mentally tough against them.”

Ryle sophomore guard Maddie Scherr scored 26 points in a win over Cooper. (File photo by Bob Jackson)

With Scherr leading the way, Ryle defeated Cooper, 72-62, to remain the top seed in the district. The talented sophomore finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and five steals.

The Raiders closed the game with a 10-2 run that included a pair of driving baskets by Scherr, who is already receiving scholarship offers from major college teams.

“Maddie stepped up tonight when she needed to and that was good for us,” said coach Haitz. “For her, being a sophomore and starting to take ownership of things in a game, that’s great.”

In the latest Northern Kentucky coaches poll, Ryle was No. 2 and Cooper was No. 10, but the biggest lead in Friday’s game was the final score.

Cooper senior guard Lexi Held kept her team in the game with her scoring, rebounding and defensive play. She got 14 of her game-high 30 points in the second half for the Jaguars.

When Ryle took a 50-42 lead late in the third quarter, Cooper responded with a 11-3 run that tied it. Held hit a 3-pointer and scored on two fast-break layups during that scoring spurt

“She’s a good player, we knew that,” coach Haitz said of Held. “We told (our girls) you’re not going to stop her every time she gets the ball. But if we can limit her touches as much as possible and keep everybody else (on their team) from scoring too much then we should come away with a ‘W’. We did that and that’s why we were successful.”

Cooper shot 41.8 percent (23 of 55) from the field compared to Ryle’s 39.4 percent (28 of 71), but the Jaguars had a problem taking care of the ball. They committed 17 turnovers and the Raiders scored after nine of them.

“Probably about 10 of those (turnovers) were unforced,” said Cooper coach Nicole Levandusky. “That’s something we’re constantly trying to work on is taking care of the ball. It’s one thing if the other team forces it, but if we’re just throwing it away ourselves that really hurts.”

The game’s other double-figure scorers were Ryle junior forward Lauren Schwartz with 16 points, Cooper senior guard Asyah Mitchell with 13 and Ryle sophomore guard Jaiden Douthit with 11.  Schwartz also had six rebounds and three assists for the Raiders.

“Things didn’t go our way (Friday) night and they did for Dixie,” coach Haitz said. “For us to play as disciplined and sound on our defensive end and run our offense the way we did (Saturday), I’m very proud of them and the way they bounced back. I couldn’t ask for anything more from them.”

RYLE            18   21   11   22  — 72
COOPER     16   16   14   16  — 62

RYLE (13-5): Crittenden 3 1 7, Schwartz 6 2 16, Scherr 12 1 26, Douthit 3 2 11, McGregor 2 2 6, Johnson 2 2 6. Totals: 28 10 72.

COOPER (7-10): Held 13 0 30, Tori Neltner 1 0 3, Mitchell 5 3 13, Landry 0 2 2, Taylor Neltner 1 0 3, Maydak 2 3 8, Lindsey 1 0 3. Totals: 23 8 62

3-poiinters:   R — Douthitt 3, Schwartz 2, Scherr. C– Held 4, Tori Neltner, Taylor Neltner, Maydak, Lindsey.

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