Hornets dominant in win at Berkshire

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Kirtland 52, Berkshire 25

BURTON—Sydney Snyder scored a game-high 28 points but it was Kirtland’s defense that made the biggest impact in a 52-25 win at Berkshire on Wednesday.

The Hornets recorded 17 steals and outrebounded the Badgers, 26-14, as they improved to 14-0 overall and 8-0 in the Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division.

“We wanted to come out and get a good strong start,” said Kirtland coach Bob Bell. “I thought the girls responded very well tonight.”

Kirtland led 30-10 at halftime and 46-12 after three quarters.

The Hornets showed several different looks on the defensive end but the Hornets found the most success with a straight up man-to-man defense that limited Berkshire’s ability to settle into an offensive set.

“We were mixing our defenses up, which we do a lot,” Bell said. “As we mixed them up, we started evaluating and we were getting more out of our man-to-man than anything else. We stayed pretty much man but went to ball pressure and fullcourt at times, but most of the time we stayed in man.”

Katie McCollister recorded five of Kirtland’s 17 steals while Sydney Snyder and Lauren Snyder snatched four and three, respectively.

Sydney Snyder also dropped a game-high 28 points on the Badgers. She also pulled down a team-high six rebounds.

Jenna Sayle pitched in with eight points and Amber Yurick, Lauren Snyder and McCollister each finished with four points for the Hornets.

“We knew they loved to play that zone defense and they play it very well,” Bell said of his approach to breaking Berkshire’s defense. “If we were going to be passive it was going to be a long night, so we decided to attack it with the same enthusiasm we’d attack a man-to-man or a press or anything else. It paid off.”

Lauren Lutz and Julia Camino both scored two points in the win.

Yurick and Camino came off the bench to provide the Hornets with the depth they’ll need to make a deep postseason run.

“They do a great job coming off the bench,” Bell said. “When they’re on the floor, I don’t feel that we’ve lost anything. I feel that we’re just as good through our top seven almost as much as we are our through our top five and that really helps.”

Kirtland hosts Villa Angela-St. Joseph on Saturday.

Kirtland 52, Berkshire 25

Kirtland (14-0, 8-0): McCollister 4 , L. Snyder 4, S. Snyder 28 , Sayle 8, Lutz 2 , Camino 2, Yurick 4

Berkshire (7-6, 3-5): Miller 4, White 10, Chapman 2, Boyle 8, Czekos 1

Kirtland 16 14 16 6 — 52
Berkshire 6 4 2 13 — 25

Free throws: Kirtland 5 of 15, Berkshire 7 of 8; 3-pointers: Kirtland 5 (L. Snyder, S. Snyder 4), Berkshire 0; Rebounds: Kirtland 26 (S. Snyder 6), Berkshire 14 ; Assists: Kirtland 17 (McCollister 6), Berkshire 5

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The creator and publisher of OhioVarsity.com, Hare has covered high school sports in Northeast Ohio since 1997. He began as a correspondent for the Lake County News Herald, where he contributed until 2011, primarily covering high school football and wrestling. In 1999, Hare began writing for IrishIllustrated.com, a member of the Scout.com network of high school and college sports web sites. He focuses on covering Notre Dame football recruiting. OhioVarsity.com was created in 2004 and was a member of the Rivals.com network until 2012. The site's original purpose was to cover Ohio high school football and recruiting news but since has grown to cover all sports and to provide sports information services to high school athletic programs and individual teams. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.