WARSAW – Fort Wayne Luers did not look like a team that had not won a game. They certainly did not look like a team that had lost a game by 54 points just three days ago. All told, Warsaw wishes Luers hadn’t figured it out.
Emma Wolfe scored 22 points and an 18-2 run by Luers in the second half was more than Warsaw could handle in a 47-36 loss to the visiting Lady Knights Tuesday night in girls buckets.
Luers (1-3), which lost 94-40 to Heritage Christian Saturday, broke open a 24-24 tie in the third quarter by scoring 14 of the game’s next 16 points, fueled in part by two three’s from Wolfe. The crafty junior guard made five of her 10 three-point attempts and added five rebounds, three assists and two steals in an all-around superb night.
“We weren’t communicating and getting through screens, and several times, we just lost her,” Warsaw head coach Michelle Harter said of her team trying to defend Wolfe. “We didn’t have a hand in her face. We drop off her and she would shoot over the top of us.”
The run in the second half by Luers was not countered by Warsaw in many facets until late in the game. The Lady Tigers hit just 25 percent (5-20) of its shots in the second half, only managing to cut the lead to 10 in the fourth quarter. Warsaw shot just 31 percent from the floor on the night, and only made 1-of-10 three-point attempts.
Pam Miller led Warsaw with 12 points and 10 boards, but only scored four of those points in the second half as Luers clamped down on what had been an open post for much of the first half. Jodie Carlson, who benefitted from Miller’s presence early, scored six points in the first half but finished with just eight points.
Dayton Groninger added 11 points and three assists in the losing effort. Kayla Knapke helped Luers with six points, eight rebounds and two assists.
“With a young team, reading what defense they are in, getting everybody set in the offense and going from there, Luers did a good job adjusting to that in the second half and we didn’t read their defense well,” Harter said.
Warsaw (1-1) will need to rebound quickly as longtime rival Tippecanoe Valley will visit the Tiger Den Friday in what should be another physical, emotion-filled contest.
“We knew with a young team, there were going to be some ups and downs,” Harter said. “We will take away some positive things from today’s game and also some things we need to get better at come Friday.”
Warsaw took command of the JV game with a double-digit lead at the half and outscored Luers 19-6 in the third quarter in a 54-21 romp. Alyssa Atkins led all scorers with 14 points, while Kenzie Welk added 13 points and Maddy Martz 12 points for the Lady Tigers.