After 20 games, everything started to fall into place for the Johnstown-Monroe High School girls basketball team.

After 20 games, everything started to fall into place for the Johnstown-Monroe High School girls basketball team.

The Johnnies were seeded 26th of 28 teams in the Division III district tournament and faced the tough task of playing a first-round game against fourth-seeded Marion Elgin, which entered the contest with only four losses.

But postseason basketball is not an exact science, as displayed by the Johnnies' 55-47 victory on Feb. 16 at Gahanna.

Johnstown had scored 50 or more points only four times this season: twice in wins over Danville (58-38 on Dec. 2 and 56-44 on Jan. 15) and in losses to Watkins Memorial (54-51 on Jan. 13) and Loudonville (60-54 on Feb. 3).

Laiken Valentine led a balanced Johnstown attack with 13 points. Holly Sammons and Sarah Thomas had 10 points apiece and Natalie Carpenter added nine points.

"We did a great job of ball reversals and going inside-out," said coach Connie Allen, whose team improved to 5-14.

"We also had several girls hit outside shots and when we missed, we got good offensive rebounds."

Makenzie Spang had 14 rebounds to go with six points as the Johnnies held a 38-18 rebounding advantage.

"We worked on trying to shut down their two best players - (Jordy) Ute at the point and (Kayla) Mohr inside," Allen said. "We put great defenders on them and everyone else looked to help. We also did a great job on the boards, not allowing many second chance points."

Ute and Mohr both scored 14 points, but the Johnnies balance prevailed.

Johnstown advanced to play in the second round at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 23, at Dublin Scioto against Linden-McKinley, which had a first-round bye. The Panthers are 5-14 and played a schedule exclusively made up of Columbus City League schools. They were 1-13 in the North Division, beating Whetstone 58-52 on Jan. 11. Their non-league wins were against South Division teams - Independence 65-55 on Dec. 21, Marion-Franklin 56-53 on Dec. 20, Columbus South 42-18 on Dec. 3 and Columbus West 71-50 on Feb. 15.

"I don't know anything about them other than they were one seed below us at 27," Allen said. "I think they have five wins, but that's about all I know about them."

The second-round winner advances to a district semifinal against third-seeded Bloom-Carroll or Ready at 6 p.m. March 2 at Olentangy Orange.

•The boys basketball team opens Division III tournament play at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 22, against Worthington Christian at Orange.

Johnstown beat the Warriors 60-57 on Jan. 4 as Sam Scovell scored 17 points with three 3-pointers and Matt Smith added 16 points.

"We didn't have much of a choice from where we were selecting (22nd of 25 teams)," said coach Kevin Martin, whose team was 5-14 overall and 2-11 in the MBC before playing Centerburg on Feb. 18. "We had played (the Warriors) and had beaten them, so we went that way."

Worthington Christian plays a non-league schedule and was 9-10 before playing Hartley on Feb. 18. The Warriors had won four consecutive games before playing the Hawks.

The winner will play fourth-seeded North Union in the second round at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 26, at Scioto.

"Also, one reason we went with Worthington Christian was to play North Union (rather than Heath) in the second round if we should win," Martin said.

"We know Heath is a really good team. We know North Union is good, but Heath creates matchup problems that we would have a tough time handling."

The winner in the second round plays sixth-seeded Columbus Academy, Madison Plains or seventh-seeded Marion Pleasant in a district semifinal at 6 p.m. March 2 in the Fairgrounds Coliseum.

AT A GLANCE

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Johnstown-Monroe boys basketball, girls basketball and wrestling teams:

BOYS BASKETBALL

*Feb. 11 - Lost to Fredericktown 52-36. Taylor Atwood scored 13 points and Matt Smith added 11 points.

Feb. 14 - Lost to Whitehall 62-46 in game rescheduled from Feb. 1 and Feb. 2 because of bad weather. Smith led with 19 points and Atwood added nine points.

*Feb. 16 - Lost to Fredericktown 41-29 in game rescheduled from Jan. 11 because of bad weather

*Feb. 18 - Played Centerburg

Feb. 22 - Worthington Christian in first round of Division III district tournament, 8 p.m. at Olentangy Orange. Winner plays fourth-seeded North Union in second round, at 8 p.m. Feb. 26 at Dublin Scioto. Winner plays sixth-seeded Columbus Academy, Madison Plains or seventh-seeded Marion Pleasant in district semifinal, 6 p.m. March 2 in the Fairgrounds Coliseum.

Of note: The Johnnies were 5-14 overall and 2-11 in the MBC before Feb. 18.

GIRLS BASKETBALL

*Feb. 12 - Lost to Centerburg 52-45. Laiken Valentine had 19 points and Sarah Thomas added 11 points.

Feb. 16 - Defeated fourth-seeded Marion Elgin 55-47 in first round of Division III district tournament.

Feb. 23 - Linden-McKinley in second round, 6 p.m. at Dublin Scioto. Winner plays third-seeded Bloom-Carroll or Ready in district semifinal, 6 p.m. March 2 at Orange.

Of note: The Johnnies are 5-16 overall and finished 3-11 in the MBC.

WRESTLING

*Feb. 12 - Finished sixth in MBC duals at Centerburg behind champion Utica. Clayton Bullard (171), Joey Dismuke (189) and R.D. Williams (215) all finished second.

Feb. 18-19 - Competed in Division III sectional at Madison Plains. Top four in each weight class advanced to district Feb. 25-26 at Coshocton. The top four in each weight class at district advance to state March 3-5 at Ohio State.

*MBC contests