Circleville girls capture third straight Mid-State League championship

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Circleville 57, Hamiltown Twp. 40
The Circleville Lady Tigers put together a balanced performance to
defeat visiting Hamilton Township 57-40 Friday night and win its
third-straight Mid-State League championship. “These seniors we have wanted to set a name for themselves,”
Circleville coach Steve Kalinoski said. “Casse Mogan, Kaitlin Graham,
Liz Scudder and Rachael Spangler did a good job of leading our team all
season.


CIRCLEVILLE – The Circleville Lady Tigers put together a balanced performance to defeat visiting Hamilton Township 57-40 Friday night and win its third-straight Mid-State League championship.

“These seniors we have wanted to set a name for themselves,” Circleville coach Steve Kalinoski said. “Casse Mogan, Kaitlin Graham, Liz Scudder and Rachael Spangler did a good job of leading our team all season.

“They can say they were apart of three MSL championships, and that is something they and the coaches are very proud of.”

Circleville entered the evening with a one-game lead over Hamilton Township and Logan Elm in the league standings. Beating the Lady Rangers meant an outright MSL championship, something that was very important to the team.

“We wanted this outright. We didn’t want to share with either Hamilton Township or Logan Elm,” Circleville senior Kaitlin Graham said. “Coach Kalinoski knew we didn’t want to share it and Coach (Brian) Bigam made it a point to say we wanted this to ourselves.”

Abbey Palmer had perhaps her best game as a Tiger by posting 17 points and five rebounds. Mogan had 16 points and five rebounds, and Kellie Willis accounted for 10 points and eight rebounds.

“Abbey stepped up to shoot the ball and run our offense well,” Kalinoski said. “Casse was able to get a break in the third quarter and we were able to protect her from getting that third foul.

“Our bench also stepped up with some good minutes, and we were able to get Rachael Spangler in for all four quarters.”

Palmer and Mogan set the tone for the Lady Tigers early, scoring eight points each in a first quarter that saw Circleville (17-2, 12-2) grab an 18-11 advantage.

“Hamilton is a team you want to get up on,” Kalinoski said. “They’re athletic and have some good players, so you don’t really want to have to chase them. We were able to start off well and that was big for us in this game.”

The Lady Tigers received four points and three rebounds from Megan White in the second period, along with five points from  Scudder, increasing its lead over Hamilton Township (14-6, 10-4) to 32-21 at halftime.

Circleville proceeded to put away the outright title in the third quarter with a 9-0 run, highlighted with Palmer coming up with a steal, driving to the hoop and putting in a free throw after being fouled on the play for an old-fashioned three-point play. The Lady Tigers outscored Hamilton Township 15-7 in the third period to take a commanding 47-28 lead.

The Lady Tigers shot 19 of 42 from the field, led by Palmer canning six of seven opportunities. Hamilton Township connected on 18 of 49 shots.

Circleville held a major advantage at the charity stripe, converting 17 of 21 free throws against 4 of 11 made by Hamilton Township.

“We work everyday on our foul shooting and it was nice to see us shoot extremely well,” Kalinoski said.

Megan Hardyman paced the Lady Rangers with 14 points and eight rebounds. Megan Campbell tallied 12 points and five rebounds.

The Lady Tigers conclude the regular season tonight with a non-league road encounter against Vinton County (17-2).

“Vinton County is a very good team and we want to build off this with a win against them to go into the tournament,” Kalinoski said.

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