Fort Frye takes care of business in sectional semi

Photo by Ron Johnston Fort Frye’s Lexie Huck, left, handles the ball as Newcomerstown’s Christina Miller defends during Thursday’s sectional semifinal in Beverly.

BEVERLY — Fort Frye High took care of business.

The top-seeded Cadets tipped off postseason play with a 68-15 triumph over visiting Newcomerstown High Thursday night in an OHSAA Division IV girls basketball semifinal game.

Lexie Huck led the scoring parade with a game-high 15 points, including three trifectas. Hannah Archer added 14 points, eight rebounds, and four steals while Liv Schneider and Kiersten Kesselring netted 12 and 11 points, respectively. Kenzie Dalton chipped in with six markers.

Schneider also had six assists and five rebounds.

“We had the ball in our hands a lot and more opportunities to score,” said FFHS head coach Dan Liedtke. “But you know, I thought we really weren’t in rhythm and that if we were playing a good team tonight, this game could’ve been really tough.”

Fort Frye, No. 15-ranked in the Feb. 11 AP State Poll with a 21-2 record, advances and is now scheduled to host the semi winner of Malvern-Toronto in a sectional final at 2 p.m. Saturday.

Winless Newcomerstown bows out with a 0-23 mark. The Trojans were paced by Taylor Lafferty’s six points.

“I’ve got to give Newcomerstown credit,” Liedtke said. “They just kept playing hard. They didn’t quit.”

Fort started off the game with a 10-0 run and never looked back. Kesselring led the charge with eight first-quarter points. Archer and Schneider each added five while Huck had four.

Newcomerstown averted a first-quarter blanking when Christina Miller drained a triple at the 3:45 mark. But at the end of one, the Trojans trailed 24-3.

Huck led off the second period with a triple as the rout resumed. Before the opening half was over, the junior sharpshooter added five more points to her total as did Schneider. Going into the locker room at the intermission, the Cadets led 43-8.

Newcomerstown got second-quarter points from Arianna Stull (2) and Lafferty (3).

During the opening minute of the third quarter, Lafferty’s trey cut it to 43-11. But Fort, sparked by Archer’s seven points, outpointed the Trojans, 12-5, in the stanza and led 55-13 going into the final period.

With the Cadets leading 62-15 at the 3:47 mark of the fourth quarter, Liedtke rested the starters, and the reserves closed out the contest.

Ron Johnston can be reached at rjohnston@mariettatimes.com