The state's No. 3 OHSAA DIII Arcanum Lady Trojans improve to 16-1 with Senior Night win over Tri-County North
ARCANUM – The Arcanum honored five Lady Trojans on Senior Night, a night the states No. 3 ranked DIII team was defeated the visiting Tri-County North Lady Panthers 56-21 in WOAC competition.
“So proud of this group,” said Arcanum coach, Abbey Moore. “It’s pretty special when you have five seniors that stick with it for this many years in a program. You don’t see that too often and these girls are a special group – they’ve been through a lot, been through a lot together and I feel fortunate to have them for two of those years. Just really excited to see where this journey is going to go for them. I think it’s going to be a memorable one.”
Most senior nights a team’s coach needs to bench several or more starters to begin the game allowing the seniors to start on senior night but not the case this night in Arcanum as the starting lineup was made up of the team’s five seniors.
“That is a testament of all the time and the hard work that they have put into this program and it has paid off,” Coach Moore stated. “I’ve stuck with them, I believe in them and they are pretty lucky because that have a very good supporting cast to come in and help them out. That is the key for us this year – to be able to make adjustments and sub. Our whole team is playing at a really good level right now and playing well together.”
Arcanum seniors included: No. 11 Meghan McCans, No. 12 Ellie Fout, No. 13 Madelyn Fearon, No. 14 Hailey Unger and No. 34 Taylor Gray, all veteran starters for the Lady Trojans.
Coach Moore took time to comment on each of her seniors following the team’s 16th victory of the season.
“Meghan has battled a lot of injuries in her career and to have the courage to come in and play her senior year and do it for her teammates – that just shows the special bond that this group has,” Moore said. “She is hitting some big shots for us and is going to be that big role player that we’re going to need come tournament time.”
“Ellie…this kid if I told her to go run through the wall she would do it for me,” stated Moore. “I feel like she always has my back, she has her teammate’s back and it is very important to have somebody on your team that can fill that role. I am proud of her for stepping up. She took a year off and to be able to come back and play at the level that she’s playing at is something to be proud of.”
“Madelyn…that’s a special one for me,” Moore shared. “She’s my niece, but all of these girls hold a special place in my heart and we are going to miss them but Madelyn, her determination on the floor I’ve never seen that out of anybody I’ve coached or coached against. When that girls puts her mind to it she’s going to do it, she’s going to accomplish it and that speaks for the kind of kid that she is.”
“I know that goes with the other things that she does in life – showing pigs,” added Coach Moore. “I see that same determination in her and when she says she wants to go win that pig showmanship she usually does it, she puts her mind to it. We have to have that from her come adverse moments in the tournament because we are going to be in tough situations and she is usually the one that can spark that fire when we need a big play – she can do it on the defensive end.”
“Hailey…can’t say enough about this kid’s athletic ability,” Moore said. “Probably one of the most athletic kids I’ve ever coached. Same thing, she has gone through adversity in her career. I remember my first day coming in here to take this job – that was my first thing. I sat down and had a conversation with her and made sure that we were on the same page. Just so proud of the way she’s accepted that role and is playing some good team basketball right now.”
“Taylor…this kid, coaching against her for two years the first two years of her high school career I knew part of my game plan was to kind of get under her skin a little bit, push her around and be physical with her because I knew she kind of struggled with that kind of play,” noted Moore. “Last year that still may have been a weekness of ours but coming into this year this girl has just gone to a whole new level.”
“She is totally committed to doing what she has to do to make sure that we need to be where we need to be to go as far as we can in the tournament,” Moore continued. “Her toughness has shown this year and being able to finish and be strong on both ends of the floor has been huge for us.”
The Lady Trojans jumped out to a 15-0 lead at the 4-minute mark of the first quarter without putting its tenacious full-court press into action from start to finish and stretched the lead to 20-0 at 3:18 bringing continual substitutions from the bench the remainder of the game.
Arcanum took advantage of 7 Hailey Unger first quarter points including a triple, 5 Madelyn Fearon points including a 3-pointer, 4 Meghan McCans points including 2-2 at the charity stripe and a Kaitlyn Toy free throw giving the Lady Trojans a 21-2 lead after one period of play.
Period No. 2 went to Arcanum 13-9 with Fearon and Unger each adding 4-points to the board, Kylee Freeman and Ellie Fout each with 2-points and Taylor Gray with a free throw sending the teams to the break with the Lady Trojans up 34-11.
Arcanum made it an 18-8 third quarter with Unger hitting for 5-points including her second triple of the game, McCans and Emilie Fout each drilled a 3-pointer and Toy and Gray each added a basket for a 52-19 score with three quarters in the book.
The fourth quarter saw the five starting seniors rooting on the younger Lady Trojans from the bench with Arcanum working the ball around the top of the key for a final 56-21 win.
“The opportunity for the legacy that these girls have is huge and I hope that every time we hit the floor we’re giving it our all so that we have no regrets because the opportunity is going to be there for these girls,” Coach Moore concluded. “It’s a matter of if they want it more than the other team and that is what it is going to come down to. I feel like we are at that place now.”
Unger led Arcanum and all scorers with a game high 18-points.
ARCANUM 56, TRI-COUNTY NORTH 21
ARCANUM – H. UNGER 18, M. Fearon 12, M. McCans 9, Emilie Fout 5, Taylor Gray 5, K. Toy 3, Ellie Fout 2, K. Freeman 2 – TOTALS 15 11-15 5 56
TRI-COUNTY NORTH – H. Webster 9, R. Terry 6, M. Bacher 4, N. Lefeld 2 – TOTALS 6 6-10 1 21
Arcanum 5 (H. Unger 2, M. McCans 1, M. Fearon 1, Emilie Fout 1)
Tri-County North 1 (H. Webster 1)
SCORE by QUARTERS
21-13-18-04 56 Arcanum
02-09-08-02 21 Tri-County North