Mellott hits 6 treys, helps Valley break skid vs. Logansport
BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS
Sports Editor, RTC
AKRON — Kaydence Mellott drained six 3-pointers and scored a game-high 20 points, and Corinna Stiles scored 11 points and and hauled down seven rebounds for the
Tippecanoe Valley girls basketball team in a 53-28 win over Logansport at Rita Price Simpson Court at the TVHS gym Nov. 16.
Combining with Stiles to give Valley a two-player presence in the paint against the undersized Lady Berries, Mercedes Snapp added eight points and six rebounds for Valley, who improved to 1-4 and snapped a six-game losing streak dating back to last year.
Gabby Richie led Logansport with 12 points. The Lady Berries have dropped eight straight games dating back to last year. They are 0-6 against Valley since adding them to their schedule in the 2014-15 season. Last year’s meeting was canceled due to COVID concerns.
Valley went on a 10-0 run covering the first and second quarters to claim a 15-5 lead, and they never trailed again.
Lily Ault started the run when she banked in a 3-pointer. Snapp scored in the post, and Mellott drilled a 3-pointer from the left corner gave Valley a 13-5 lead after one quarter. Mellott’s driving layup on a press breaker in the opening moments of the second quarter capped the run.
“We’ve had runs against us the first four games of the year, so it was nice to have one of our own,” Valley coach Chris Kindig said. “And that kind of propelled us. I mean, really, we didn’t give up that 10-point lead the rest of the game. … I think it got our confidence up a little bit.”
Valley led 26-11 at halftime. Logansport hung within 38-24 thanks to Richie going on a personal 8-0 run to close out the third quarter.
But Stiles found Snapp for a short jumper before hitting two free throws. When Mellott found Snapp for another short banker, the lead was back to 20.
The 25-point margin of victory represented their largest lead. Logansport did not score in the final four minutes.
Chris Keisling, who was the principal at Rochester from 2014-21, is in his first season as Logansport coach. He withdrew from his trademark 2-3 zone – he used that defense in guiding the 2014 Western girls team to the Class 3A state title that year before leaving the coaching field to become a school administrator – and tried to pressure Valley once his team fell behind.
He also thought his defenders lost where Mellott was at times.
“I felt like of course that was a big run for them,” Keisling said of Valley’s first-quarter run. “They were at home. They were bedding some positives too, and they were able to keep that going. We tried to go to a press to maybe get some transition buckets out of them, but we were not able to finish. We’d force a turnover and give it right back to them or not get a finish. That was kind of the story of the ballgame there in the first half and got us in a hole.”
The graduations of Sidney Wagner, Hayley Backus and Ashley Butler from last year’s team opened a spot in the starting lineup for Stiles, Snapp and Molly Moriarty.
The 6-0 Stiles is more of a forward than a post player. She’s a capable passer and shooter and has more of a face-up game than a back-to-the-basket game. In their first four games, Valley has already seen Bremen’s Ellia Foster, Culver Academy’s Taylor Bowen, Warsaw’s Kacilyn Krebs and Northwestern’s McKenna Layden. Bowen and Layden are Division I recruits, and Krebs has signed with Division II UIndy.
Stiles said her role on the team is “definitely defense, scoring when I can and getting rebounds, of course.”
“What was different about this game than the last? We won.” Stiles said. “And we trusted the process, which I think has been hard, but we had a tough four games. So having this one and coming out knowing we can win and do this, it was a good relief.”
Kindig said Valley mixed in man-to-man defense with a 1-3-1 zone.
“They just weren’t hitting shots,” Kindig said. “I think it was the right defense for them because they were rushing things, but that was intentional.”
Valley also cranked out a 63-21 win in the JV game. DeLaney Siders scored 15 points, Carlee Snyder had 13, and Lydia Craig had 11 to lead Valley. Ava Smith had nine, Macy Petersen had six, Bailey Bussard had five, and Chesnee Miller had four.
Valley 53, Logansport 28
LOGANSPORT (28) (0-4)
Gabby Richie 5 0-1 12, Lydia Goad 2 0-0 6, Pailei Cripe 1 0-0 2, Laney Pearson 0 1-2 1, Kendra Sutton 2 1-2 5, Alexsa Herrold 0 0-0 0, Gabby Reyes 0 0-0 0, Chloe Crook 0 0-0 0, Raelyn Bell 0 0-2 0, Taylor Hamm 1 0-0 2
TEAM: 11 2-7 28
VALLEY (53) (1-4)
Lily Ault 2 0-0 6, Molly Moriarty 1 0-1 2, Kaydence Mellott 7 0-0 20, Corinna Stiles 4 3-5 11, Mercedes Snapp 4 0-2 8, Lydia Craig 0 0-0 0, Ava Smith 0 0-0 0, Chesnee Miller 0 0-0 0, Bailey Bussard 0 0-0 0, Carlee Snyder 1 0-0 2
TEAM: 19 7-13 53
Three-point field goals:
Logansport 4 (Richie 2, Goad 2),
Valley 8 (Mellott 6, Ault 2)
Total fouls: Logansport 17, Valley 11
Turnovers: Logansport 22, Valley 22
Score by quarters
Logansport 5 6 13 4 – 28
Valley 13 13 12 15 – 53
JV: Valley 63, Logansport 21