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Aurora girls basketball wins first conference title in 90 years

Published: February 15, 2017 10:48 PM
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Erika Greenberg saw it every day.
And the ninth-year Aurora head coach got really sick of being reminded of it.
Well, Greenberg and her players got to experience a change of scenery.
That's because the Lady Greenmen won their first conference championship since 1927.
Host Aurora earned its first-ever Suburban League American Conference title after earning a 38-27 victory over Tallmadge Feb. 15.
With the win, the Lady Greenmen, who won the Portage County League championship in 1927, shared the title with Revere, which posted a 37-27 win over Barberton Feb. 15 in Bath Township. Both Aurora and the Lady Minutemen finished 10-2 in the conference.
The Lady Greenmen (16-6), which also defeated the Lady Blue Devils 32-28 earlier in the season in Tallmadge, won, thanks to their defense, which has been their calling card throughout the season.
Aurora forced 23 turnovers and frustrated the the Lady Blue Devils' offense, which never really found their rhythm after the early stages of the first quarter.
The Lady Greenmen did their most damage inside.
Thanks mainly to the play of senior guard/forward Syarra Sellers, Aurora controlled the paint from start to finish.
Syarra Sellers, who, along with senior guards April Davis, Sarah Marchese and Korie Hobbs, were honored prior to the game, finished with a game-high 14 points.
Syarra Sellers, scored most of her points near the basket, as Tallmadge had no one who could keep us with her throughout the evening.
The standout forward was able to bank home a number of shots in traffic. A few of those baskets came off assists from her younger sister, sophomore guard Shayla Sellers.
After a couple of 3-pointers by Lady Blue Devils' senior guard Olivia Ayres early in the game, the Lady Greenmen eventually took control with their defense.
Tallmadge (17-5, 8-4) had trouble getting open shots and thanks to Aurora's active hands, the Lady Blue Devils constantly gave away a number of offensive possessions.
The Lady Greenmen, on the other hand, were much more careful with the ball. Aurora finished with just 7 turnovers.
The Lady Greenmen started to take control with a 7-0 run early in the second quarter. That spurt gave Aurora an 18-11 advantage.
Tallmadge, which had its last lead (9-8) late in the first quarter, had six turnovers and took just four shots in the second period. The Lady Greenmen, who outscored the Lady Blue Devils 10-4 in the second quarter, had a 23-15 lead at halftime.
Tallmadge was able to get a little bit more offense in the third period, but again, the Lady Blue Devils had trouble keeping the ball in their hands.
Tallmadge lost the ball six times in the period. If the Lady Blue Devils got somewhat close, Aurora always seemed to have an answer.
When junior forward Maia Aizpurua made a layup to cut Tallmadge's deficit to six (30-24), the Lady Greenmen regained control with five straight points. All five of those points came off the smooth hands of Syarra Sellers, who concluded the mini run with a tough scoop shot in traffic off the glass.
The Lady Blue Devils didn't have anything left after that.
Shayla Sellers scored 8 points and Davis and sophomore guard Haley Ross each had 7 points for Aurora.
Neither team got too many free opportunities as only eight foul shots were taken.
Ayres finished with 9 points on three 3-pointers. No other Tallmadge player scored more than five points.


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