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Strong third quarter sends Squires to win

Staff reports

The North Manchester girls’ basketball team moved to 2-0 with a commanding victory at home over Lewis Cass on Tuesday. The Squires won each of the opening three quarters, including outscoring the Kings 16-2 in the third to win 44-21.

“We had a great defensive stand tonight,” head coach Jacob Everett said in an e-mail to the Plain Dealer. “The third quarter was the difference again. The girls are doing a great job of responding out of halftime.”

The Squires jumped out to a 15-6 lead in the first and pushed the lead to 26-15 by halftime. In the third, though, the Kings managed just two points with Manchester’s advantage exploding out to 42-17 heading to the fourth.

Kennedy Fierstos led the balanced attack by the Squire offense with 11 points while Emma West and Kennidy Lauer had nine and eight points, respectively. Kiera Hatfield recorded seven points, Eva Bazzoni added four, Mackenzie Day three and Bailey Mooney two.

Bazzoni grabbed six rebounds while Hatfield and Lauer had five boards apiece. Fierstos and Day each had four with the former adding five assists. West finished with five steals.

Manchester shot 44 percent from the field, hitting 19-of-43 shots on the day, a 44 percent clip. That figure includes a 3-of-15 performance from beyond the arc as Manchester overcame the poor shooting from deep with a 16-of-28 shooting performance inside the arc.

The Squires also struggled at the line, hitting 3-of-13 from the charity stripe on the evening. Manchester also struggled with turnovers, giving the ball away 25 times. That figure was partially offset by the Squires’ 13 steals.

Manchester returned to the court on Wednesday against Warsaw but results were unavailable as of Plain Dealer deadline. Manchester opens up Three Rivers Conference play on the road on Saturday at Maconaquah. Tip-off is set for 7:45 p.m.