The Olentangy Orange High School girls basketball team knew Twinsburg senior guard Ashley Morrissette would be tough to handle during a Division I state semifinal March 15 at Ohio State.
And she was.
The play of Morrissette — Ohio’s Ms. Basketball — ended up being among the many factors that led the two-time defending champion Tigers to a 73-63 win over the Pioneers.
Morrissette had 20 points and seven rebounds, but senior forward Char-dell Dunnigan made six of seven shots for 14 points, senior guard Brooke Thompson-Smith contributed 19 points and four steals and junior guard/forward Baleigh Reid added 15 points.
Twinsburg was 27-for-47 from the floor and will take a 29-0 record into the state final at 8:30 p.m. March 16 against Kettering Fairmont or Toledo Notre Dame Academy.
“Their guards controlled the whole tempo and Char-dell was 6-for-7,” said Orange coach Mary Ann Grimes, whose team finished 26-3. “There was no quit (in my team).”
Twinsburg used a 12-2 run to go ahead 31-17 with 5 minutes, 23 seconds left in the second quarter and stretched the lead to as much as 60-40 with 2:36 to go in the third.
Orange rallied to within 70-63, but Morrissette made nine of 10 free throws in the fourth.
Senior forward Mya Walker had 20 points and six rebounds for Orange followed by senior guard Taylor Agler with 19 points, five rebounds and five assists, senior guard Kierstynn Myers scored 10 points and junior post player Sarah Sagerer added nine points and eight rebounds.