Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Blue Devils settle in for win over Fairview

Three players scored in double figures to lead Independence to a 61-38 win at Fairview on Saturday.

The Blue Devils started slowly but dominated on both ends once they found their rhythm.

“We had more resistance today because we had a solid team we played against,” Independence coach Mike Marcinko said. “We were on the road and didn’t shoot well so we got off to a slow start. They sure as heck kicked it in during the second quarter defensively and started to get their feet under them offensively.”

After leading 15-11 in the first quarter, the Blue Devils went on a 15-3 second-quarter run to take a 30-14 lead into the break.

They outscored Fairview 28-11 in the third quarter to seal their seventh win of the season.

“We pressured well in the quarter court and half court,” Marcinko said. “That got us some run outs and we were off and running at that point. We got some more people in during the fourth quarter and got to spread the wealth around.”

Riley Wilson led the Blue Devils with 15 points and Haylee Dmitruk and Riccela DiGeronimo both finished with 13.

Madison Stepanik added eight points and Kaitlyn Richards pitched in with six for the Blue Devils.

“One of their zones had some gaps and we felt Haylee could drive and sure enough, she was scoring or dumping down to people,” Marcinko said. “She was slicing and dicing and getting us some good looks. After that, we were confident. We were defending hard, we were rebounding, running and executing, shots were falling and we were off and running. As far as our posts, they didn’t get double figures, but between Madison and Kaitlyn, that position had 14 points and had probably 14 rebounds out of the five spot. Riley did her work offensively and defensively inside and Riccela was getting some rebounds and was scoring.”

Independence improved to 7-1 on the year.

“What a great way to go to break,” Marcinko said. “We’ve got a long weekend and Christmas coming up. We put in a lot of work to this point and obviously, we’re not done but sit back and enjoy it and we’ll get ready when we’re done after Christmas.”

The Blue Devils travel to West Geauga on Dec. 29.

Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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