The Gahanna Lincoln High School girls basketball team wasn't blinded by the final score of its victory over Teays Valley in the first round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 19 at Hilliard Davidson.

The Gahanna Lincoln High School girls basketball team wasn't blinded by the final score of its victory over Teays Valley in the first round of the Division I district tournament Feb. 19 at Hilliard Davidson.

Junior Haley Schmitt, a third-year starter who had 15 points and four rebounds to lead the way in a 49-23 win, knows the inevitability of the postseason: The toughest battles are yet to come.

If the Lions win their next tournament game, they likely will run into top-seeded and undefeated Dublin Coffman in a district semifinal Wednesday at Olentangy Orange.

"We could have played a lot better," Schmitt said. "We need to get a lot better because it's going to get a lot harder."

Schmitt and her teammates used the week between their tournament opener and their second-round game today at Davidson against Olentangy to recuperate from a few days of sickness that passed through the locker room.

The time also was spent working on crashing the boards. Gahanna, which was outrebounded by Teays Valley 21-16 but compensated with one of its better defensive performances, next will face a Braves team which has been playing its best of late. Olentangy went just 6-14 overall in the regular season after earning 13 wins a year ago, but it won two of its last three.

More importantly for the Braves is that they're getting healthier. Junior Christine Delaney, a 6-foot post player who likely will battle with Schmitt down low, was averaging 16 points and 10 rebounds when she suffered ligament damage in her left ankle in a 65-64 loss to Olentangy Liberty on Dec. 19. Delaney returned for the rematch with Liberty on Jan. 30 and scored 13 points. She has averaged 11.4 points in the five games since getting back on the court.

In the Braves' 55-41 loss to Westerville South in their regular-season finale Feb. 13, freshman guard Nicole Payne scored 18 points, Delaney added nine and freshman guard Jamie Richardson and senior guard Morgan Dieck scored six.

Sophomore Emily Raiff, a 6-0 guard, is another key player.

The only common opponents between the teams were South and Pickerington Central. The Lions beat South 52-43 in their opener Nov. 28 and split with Central in OCC-Ohio Division play. The Braves lost both their OCC-Cardinal matchups with South and were crushed by Central 91-41 on Jan. 19.

Today's winner will play Coffman or Newark, which meet at 7 p.m. today at Westerville Central.

The Shamrocks feature a pair of Division I college signees in post player Becca Bornhorst (Butler) and point guard Sam MacKay (Dayton) and blew out Walnut Ridge 75-22 in their tournament opener Feb. 19.

Coffman's closest game came when it beat West Chester Lakota West 54-44 on Dec. 28.

The Lions easily defeated Newark 43-25 on Dec. 9 and 53-28 on Jan. 23 in their OCC-Ohio meetings.

"(Olentangy is) going to play basically four guards and one post," coach Rick Hauser said. "They like to press and run, and they like to play at a fast pace. I thought we were like that, unless you look at the first half (against Teays Valley)."

Against the Vikings, Gahanna took a 12-6 lead into the second quarter after Jill O'Donnell made a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left in the opening period. The Lions then held Teays Valley to two points in the second quarter to build a 23-8 halftime advantage.

Gahanna held the Vikings scoreless for 7:01 over the second and third periods and led 35-9 with 2:49 left in the third.

"(Our rebounding) was a little disappointing," Hauser said. "I think some people need to be going after the ball instead of getting their man."

At a glance

Below are recent results and the coming schedule for the Gahanna girls basketball team:

*Feb. 10 -- Defeated Groveport 66-33

*Feb. 13 -- Lost to Reynoldsburg 35-29

Feb. 19 -- Def. Teays Valley 49-23 in first round of Division I district tournament. Haley Schmitt had 15 points and four rebounds.

Today -- At Hilliard Davidson vs. Olentangy in second round (7 p.m.). The winner will play top-seeded Dublin Coffman or Newark in a district semifinal at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday at Olentangy Orange. The district final is March 7 at Orange.

Of note: The Lions are 13-8 overall and finished 7-7 in the OCC-Ohio behind Pickerington North (12-2), Pickerington Central (11-3), Grove City (10-4) and Reynoldsburg (10-4) and ahead of Newark (3-11), Lancaster (2-12) and Groveport (1-13).

*OCC-Ohio game