LCA senior Hope Fancil leads a fast break during the first quarter. Photo by Gary Nieter, Times-Union
LCA senior Hope Fancil leads a fast break during the first quarter. Photo by Gary Nieter, Times-Union
GOSHEN – A runaway victory in the semifinals has Lakeland Christian Academy one more win from raising its first sectional trophy in girls basketball.

The Lady Cougars (16-8) built leads of 25-3 and 37-10 at the first two quarter breaks Friday on the way to a 63-19 win against Hamilton (0-23).

The championship game against Lakewood Park Christian (16-5) – a 39-33 winner against Fremont in Friday’s second semifinal – is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. today at Bethany Christian High School.

LCA was able to substitute freely and used 12 players Friday. The Marines only dressed five players.

The Lady Cougars bested Hamilton 77-18 on Dec. 2.

LCA coach Allison Kauffman set out some objectives for her players in Friday’s rematch.

“We definitely wanted to execute, especially with those little things we’ve talked about all year – taking care of the ball, playing good defense, boxing out, finishing,” said Kauffman. “I wanted to see my girls come out with intensity.

“For the most part, the girls came out with intensity and took their shots with confidence. There were some lapses once in awhile. But, for the most part, they did a pretty good job.”

Despite being at a number disadvantage, Hamilton did not back down during a rough-and-tumble contest played on Buller Court at the Menno Lands.

“They were really aggressive,” said Kauffman, who saw the Marines get all their points from sophomore Brea Steury (14) and junior Tori Creager (5).

Senior Hope Fancil (20 points), sophomore Tori Calizo (16) and junior Anna Reimink (11) led the attack for LCA, playing in its sixth sectional tournament since becoming a full IHSAA member in 2012-13.

Fancil made both three-pointers she attempted and scored 12 points in the first quarter.

Calizo tallied five points in the first period and seven in the third stanza with a three-pointer in each.

Reimink also canned seven points in the third quarter. She finished the night with a team-best eight rebounds.

“We’ve been pretty widespread with our scoring, which is nice,” said Kauffman. “They can shoot from outside, but they can also attack off the dribble. We also have girls who can score in the post. Having those multiple threats really helps us out.”

The Cougars head into tonight’s title affair on a seven-game win streak. Lakewood Park has won its last six. LCA topped the Panthers 33-31 on a buzzer-beater on Nov. 16.


H    3    7    5    2    –    19

LCA    25    12    18    8    –    63

Hamilton – Natnapa Mungsanti 0-3 0-0 0, Brea Steury 5-21 2-4 14, Tori Creager 2-16 0-0 5, Iara Fore Araujo 0-0 0-0 0, Ting Lin 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 7-41 2-4 19.

LCA – Hope Fancil 9-14 0-0 20, Jessica Slone 1-8 0-0 2, Brady Gross 2-4 0-0 4, Anna Reimink 5-7 1-1 11, Tori Calizo 7-14 0-0 16, Maddie Paris 1-4 0-0 2, Abigail Fishel 2-4 0-0 4, Lauren Starrett 0-0 0-0 0, Jordan Gross 1-5 0-0 2, Winnie Kyandaluba 0-1 0-0 0, Avery Hobbs 1-5 0-0 2, Liza Schmitt 0-3 0-0 0. Totals 29-69 1-1 63.

Three-pointers – Hamilton 3 (Steury 2, Creager), LCA 4 (Fancil 2, Calizo 2); Rebounds – Hamilton 29 (Creager 12, Steury 10), LCA 50 (Reimink 8, Paris 6, Fishel 5); Fouls – Hamilton 6, LCA 8; Fouled Out – none; Records: Hamilton 0-23, LCA 16-8.