Not every game has to be a barn-burner, and even the best of teams need the occasional 30-point win to let its stars relax and recuperate while the subs get some valuable playing time.
After an intense battle with fellow Inter-Valley Conference front-runner Garaway one game earlier that ended with a hard-fought 59-50 victory, the Hiland Lady Hawks could use a little breather.
That came by the way of the East Canton Hornets, another IVC foe that does not quite provide the same level of competition that Garaway boasts.
Hiland poured it on offensively in the first half of its Saturday, Jan. 9 game at East Canton, and the lady Hawks rolled out a pair of 20-plus quarters to cruise to a 68-38 victory.
The Lady Hawks put up a 21-spot in the first quarter, riding the hot hand of Kennedy Schlabach, who was clicking in every scoring aspect, from free throws, to lay-ups, to the long ball. Schlabach would lead all scorers with a 22-point night, including canning three-3-pointers. After the 21-9 first quarter edge, Hiland would bump its lead to 41-21 at the half, then surge to a 56-32 lead through three. The third quarter saw plenty of substitutes on Dave Schlabach’s bench of Lady Hawks see loads of action.
One huge positive for Hiland was the return of senior sharpshooter Lish Miller, who had been battling an illness. Miller drained a pair of threes en route to an 11-point evening. Angela Troyer added nine points, Sara Keim chipped in with eight, Brittany Miller and Jessica Troyer each added six, while Isabelle Fowler, Mya Blochlinger and Abby Miller each added a pair. For East Canton, Savannah Yacklin at least kept East Canton from being totally blown out with her 14-point effort.
Hiland would win the battle on the glass 31-21, with Brittany Miller hauling down a team-high six and Melissa Hostetler adding five. Jessica Troyer and Fowler each recorded four thefts, and Hiland forced 31 turnovers while limiting the Hornets to an ugly 14-of-33 night. The Lady Hawks outscored East Canton 27-3 from beyond the arc, with Hiland using its pin-point accuracy from downtown to put the game out of reach.
The win moves Hiland to 12-2 on the campaign.