VANDALIA – On Saturday the Lady Aviators basketball team hosted Troy for a GWOC North showdown. This divisional battle would move the winner into second place within the division. The Aviators came into the game off of a big win over Greenville, and looked to continue their winning ways at home.
The Trojans opened the game hot, shutting the Aviators down while adding points of their own. Butler fought back and trail by one points at halftime. The Aviators had momentum heading into the second half, eliminated the deficit and took a lead of their own. Late in the final quarter, the Aviators would add consecutive baskets, stretch their lead to eight, and defeat the Trojans at home by a final score of 44-36.
This win moved the Aviators into a tie for second place in the GWOC North division with a 2-1 record while improving to 8-5 overall.
The game opened slowly for the Aviators who struggled to find open shots offensively and were unable to slow down the Trojans on the defensive end. Butler found themselves down by 11 at the end of the opening quarter, 16-5. Senior Abby Grooms led the way for the Aviators in the opening quarter, adding three of Butler five points.
The Lady Aviators turned the tide in the second quarter though, finding a rhythm on the offensive end, and playing more physical defensively. Butler shut down Troy in the second and didn’t give up a basket until over half way through the quarter. The Aviators outscored Troy 13-3 in the second quarter, and pulled within one point of the lead at 19-18. Leading the way for the Aviators in the second quarter was junior Brittney Petrosky who added four points.
The Aviators carried their momentum into the second half, quickly eliminated the deficit, and grabbed a lead of their own. Butler won the period 14-6 and took a 32-25 lead heading into the final frame. Senior Shelby Moses added five points in the quarter on a pair of baskets, including a three-pointer.
In the final quarter, the Aviators continued to hold tough and maintain a lead. Troy tried to rally, and pulled as close as two points. Butler held off the Trojans and extend their lead following some intentional fouling to conserve time. Eventually the Aviators polished off Troy by a final score of 44-36.
Leading scorers for Saturday’s game were Abby Grooms with 12 points, followed by Shelby Moses and Brittney Petrosky with 10. Keonni Rakestraw also added eight for the Aviators.
Butler will be back in action on Wednesday as they travel to Piqua to play the Indians. Tip time for that game will be 6 p.m. for the JV, with varsity to follow at 7:30.