CHASSELL - Ontonagon High girls' basketball coach Dick Franti knew exactly what to expect when he brought his unbeaten team to Chassell Tuesday evening.
"They (Panthers) are going to come at you hard for four quarters," Franti said after his team's 41-31 Copper Country Conference victory. "If you don't respond to their pressure on both sides of the court, you're in trouble."
Fortunately for Franti, his team matched the intensity of the hometown team.
Ontonagon’s Molly Domitrovich runs into the defense of Chassell’s Sara Kilpela during Tuesday’s Copper Country Conference game in Chassell. Brooke Turin (20)?watches from behind. (Paul Peterson photo)
Leading from early in the second quarter to the finish, the Gladiators were able to keep close tabs on CHS ace guard Jamie Dompier.
The speedy senior guard was held to a season-low nine points, managing just two baskets.
"They (Gladiators) did a good job on Jamie," Panthers coach Brandi Hainault commented. "We weren't able to get anyone else going offensively and they focused on stopping her."
Ontonagon 6 13 8 13 - 41
Chassell 5 11 6 9 - 31
Ontonagon - Molly Domitrovich 4, Brooke Turin 12, Brilynn Pollard 4, Chelsea Truscott 18, Bobbi Ross 3. FT: 7-14; Rebounds: 31 (Ross 9); Fouls: 9; Fouled out: None; 3-point FG: None.
Chassell - Jamie Dompier 9, Kirsten Daavettila 7, Karli Michaels 5, Maddie Huhta 6, Tawna Ryynanen 2, Macy Holombo 2. FT: 5-8; Rebounds: 25 (Huhta 6); Fouls: 15; Fouled out: Michaels; 3-point FG: Michaels 1, Daavettila 1.
Franti said that slowing up Dompier is always a task.
"She is just so darn quick, you have to assign a couple of people to guard her. But I thought we did a reasonably good job tonight."
Senior center Bobbi Ross was a defensive standout for the winners. While scoring just three points, she grabbed a game-high nine rebounds and blocked four shots.
After a mistake-filled first quarter that ended with OAHS up by a 6-5 margin, Ontonagon grabbed a 19-16 halftime lead.
And with Chelsea Truscott showing the way, the Maroon and White went up by a 27-22 margin after three periods.
A couple of baskets by junior Brooke Turin to begin the final stanza made it a 35-26 lead, and Chassell was through for the night.
"Ontonagon is always good, they have a great coach and tradition. So, it's always a hard game," Hainault said. "But we'll regroup and come back ready to play next month."
Now 6-0 overall and 2-0 in the CCC, the Glads were led by Truscott's 18 points. Turin came up with 12 points and grabbed six rebounds, drawing Franti's praise.
"That was big, getting 12 from Brooke Turin," he said. "And she had to earn every one of those because Dompier was on her most of the time."
Chassell slipped to 3-2 on the season and 2-1 in the league. Kirsten Daavettila backed up Dompier's eight steals with seven points and five steals.