Falcons earn 50-42 win over Poland
January 18, 2018


Even though the Fitch girls basketball team suffered a 46-45 loss at home to Howland on Jan 6., the Lady Falcons fought back to polish off Poland 50-42 four nights later. With the season at a crossroads for the Falcons, beating the Lady Bulldogs was imperative.

"Poland was a good win for the team," said head coach Dan Schnurrenberger last weekend. "Especially since we were not playing our best basketball as a team."

Schnurrenberger's squad needed to play some good basketball to upend the 7-3 Bulldogs. The Falcons won every quarter in this closely played contest, but never had more than a three-point advantage in any of those frames. Great defense enabled the Falcons to hold Poland to less than ten points in quarters two and three. A 17-point outburst in the fourth period by Fitch's offense allowed the hosts to secure the victory. Sabria Hunter headed Fitch's scoring attack with 27 points, but Coach Schnurrenberger went back to his team's defensive stinginess when discussing the key to the triumph.

"Poland had some good guards in Jackie Grisdale and Bella Gajdos, but as a team we did a tremendous job defending those two," Schnurrenberger said. "I loved the energy and I loved how hard the team played."

Fitch's ladies also played hard when Howland was in town, but the result was less exciting. A late game 3-pointer by the Lady Tigers gave them the slender victory. Howland dominated the game early and took a 25-14 lead into halftime. Although Fitch outscored the visitors 31-21 in the second half, it wasn't enough of a comeback. Hunter once again paced Fitch with 17 points.

Fitch also fell to Berea-Midpark and Solon in a couple of Holiday Tournament tilts before regaining its traction with a 56-50 win over Lakeview. It took two overtimes to trap that triumph, however, so Coach Schnurrenberger remained stable in his assessment of that match.

"We were fortunate to come out with a win versus Lakeview," he said.

Fitch will carry an 8-5 record into a terrifying trio of games this week. The first two games are conference showdowns with Boardman and Canfield on Jan. 17 and Jan. 20 respectively. The spat with the Lady Spartans will be in Austintown while the clash with the Lady Cardinals will take place in Canfield. The Falcons have already played that doubleheader earlier this season with mixed results. Fitch beat Boardman 56-49 on Dec. 9 and lost at home to the Cardinals 62-52 on December 13. There is also a trip to unbeaten West Branch scheduled for Monday. Should the Falcons get through this stretch unscathed, they will have a rematch with the Tigers to prepare for on February 3. Fitch's coach knows that it will take a lot of practice to gain revenge over Howland, but is also aware the road to that game is littered with rivalry potholes.

"As a staff the coaches and players are going to have to watch some film and prepare for the next Howland game," said Schnurrenberger. "Until then we have some big conference games starting with Boardman to look forward to."


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