VERSAILLES — In a matchup with Parkway Thursday night in Midwestern Athletic Conference action, Versailles girls basketball coach Jacki Stonebraker wanted to see one thing from her team.
And she got exactly that from start to finish.
Versailles jumped out to a 22-4 first quarter lead and cruised to a 71-20 victory to set up a big week next week.
“I was really happy with how focused we were coming out,” Stonebraker said.
Versailles improved to 13-3 and 7-0 in the MAC, keeping pace with Minster. The Wildcats are 15-1 and 6-0 after a win over New Bremen. Parkway dropped to 2-13 overall and 0-6 in the MAC.
With the tournament draw looming, Versailles travels to West Liberty-Salem Tuesday, then Minster Thursday, before hosting Russia a week from Saturday.
Both Versailles and WLS are in the running for the top seed at the D-III sectional, while the Minster game will likely determine the MAC champion.
“It is a big week,” Stonebraker said. “The game with West Liberty-Salem with the tournament draw. We have three games next week and three games the week after that.”
And the Tigers capped a tough week this week, after getting past Franklin Monroe Tuesday. Versailles sophomore Trevor Huber lost his life earlier this week from injuries suffered in an ATV accident.
“It has been a tough week,” Stonebraker said. “We are a close team. When one or two girls are hurting, they all are hurting.”
The Tigers set the tone early and often Thursday.
Caitlin McEldowney opened the game’s scoring with a 3-pointer. Lindsey Winner and Liz Ording followed with baskets inside, before a 3-pointer by Hannah Barga.
Barga added a free throw, Winner scored twice more and Liz Watren scored on a layup to make it 17-2 with 1:33 to go in the first quarter and the Tigers never let up.
Fourteen different Versailles players saw the court, with 10 finding the scoring column.
“We used a lot of different combinations,” Stonebraker said. “The girls did a good job figuring out who were the guards and who were the posts.”
Versailles led 41-11 at halftime and 60-17 after three quarters.
Winner led the Tigers balanced attack with 14 points and 10 rebounds in limited playing time.
“It is great to see Lindsey (Winner) get a double-double,” Stonebraker said. “We have come to expect that from her.”
Watren found double figures with 12 points.
“It was great to see Liz (Watren) score like that,” Stonebraker said.
McEldowney added nine points, Brooke Stonebraker had eighth points and six rebounds and Ording scored six points.
Claire Eichler led Parkway with six points and five rebounds.
Versailles was 29 for 58 from the floor for 50 percent and 8 for 18 from the line for 44 percent. Parkway was 9 for 40 from the floor for 23 percent and 2 for 6 from the line for 33 percent.
The Tigers doubled the Panthers on the boards 36-18 and had 11 turnovers to Parkway’s 23.