The Upper Arlington High School girls basketball team enters its game against Watkins Memorial in the second round of the Division I district tournament knowing that it doesn't have to rely on its 3-point shooting to win.

The Upper Arlington High School girls basketball team enters its game against Watkins Memorial in the second round of the Division I district tournament knowing that it doesn't have to rely on its 3-point shooting to win.

The Golden Bears matched their season-low with only two 3-pointers in a 67-37 win over Grove City in their tournament opener Feb. 17 at Hilliard Davidson. UA improved to 16-5 and advanced to play Watkins Memorial at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 24, at Hamilton Township.

"We didn't shoot the ball well," coach Chris Savage said of his team's performance against Grove City. "We made only two 3 pointers and we won by 30. That's really not our mode of operation for us.

"We had a lot of aggressiveness right from the start. Our aggressiveness to the rim really showed (against Grove City). We haven't shown that a lot this season, so that was good to see."

Watkins Memorial, which is 4-15 and had a first-round bye, has allowed only 12 3-pointers in its last five games, while UA made 29 3s in its final five regular-season games. The Warriors have been led by Lou Nickel, who has averaged 9.4 points the last five games.

Savage said his team can't afford to overlook Watkins Memorial.

"At this time of the year, you play who is in front of you. If we come out like (we did against Grove City), we will be fine."

The UA-Watkins Memorial winner plays fifth-seeded Pickerington North or Olentangy Liberty in a district semifinal at 6 p.m., Tuesday, March 1, at Liberty. North improved to 16-5 with an 82-17 win over Franklin Heights in its tournament opener on Feb. 17. That same day, Liberty beat Worthington Kilbourne 39-26 in the first round to improve to 5-16.

The Bears have not played North or Liberty since the 2007-08 season when it defeated Liberty 56-48 in the second round of the tournament before losing to North 55-48 in a semifinal.

UA outscored Grove City 19-5 in the second quarter to build a 35-14 lead over the Greyhounds, who finished 2-19. According to Savage, the lopsided win allowed the Bears to try different player combinations. All 14 of UA's players saw action and 10 scored, with Olivia Menden and Sarah Hobbs both scoring 14 points to lead the team.

"I was really happy with the amount of time we were able to get the younger players in," Savage said. "Right now, if we keep winning, that means we get a lot of extra practice time and that's something that other teams don't get. People don't realize how valuable that extra time is at this time of the year."

UA had closed the regular season with a 41-36 loss to Dublin Scioto on Feb. 14. The Bears' point total marked their lowest offensive output since a 53-36 loss to Dresden Tri-Valley in the second round of the 2009 tournament.

"Losing to Scioto really hurt us," Savage said. "It didn't matter whether we won or lost; we just didn't play well.

"To come out against Grove City and play as hard and aggressive as we did was great. If we keep playing like that, we have a chance to go deep into the tournament."

AT A GLANCE

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Upper Arlington girls basketball team:

Feb. 17 - Defeated Grove City 67-37 in first round of Division I district tournament. Olivia Menden and Sarah Hobbs scored 14 points apiece.

Feb. 24 - Watkins Memorial in second round of district tournament, 6

p.m. Feb. 24 at Hamilton Township. Winner plays fifth-seeded Pickerington North or Olentangy Liberty in a district semifinal, 6 p.m. March 1 at Liberty. Winner plays third-seeded Olentangy Orange, Central Crossing, Logan or Scioto in a district final, 4 p.m. March 5 at Liberty.

Of note: The Bears are 16-5 overall.