Columbus North struggled in the opening period at Columbus East, but a scoreless second quarter by the Olympians allowed the Bull Dogs to get back on track.
Class 4A No. 10 North outscored East 18-0 in the second period and scored 23 consecutive points in its 58-43 win.
Maliah Howard-Bass was the Bull Dogs’ only offense in the first quarter, scoring all of their eight points. She ended the game with 24.
Ashlyn Huffman had a solid performance in her first start of the season, scoring 17 points and going 5 for 5 from the free-throw line. Thursday night was the most minutes she has played all season.
North leaned heavily on the two seniors, who accounted for its first 31 points of the game.
“It was definitely a team effort,” Huffman said. “We had a lot of offensive rebounds. I think Jenna Borger had a huge game. Kenzie (Patberg) played a great game and had a lot of assists.”
The Olympians (5-4) started the game strong, outscoring the Bull Dogs 12-8 in the first quarter. East was outscored by only one point in the second half.
The Olympians were down by 14 points going into the fourth and managed to pull within six. Seven of Britney Ballard’s nine points came in the fourth quarter.
Addy Galarno came up big for East in the fourth as well, scoring five of her team-high 11 points in the final period.
“We never give up,” East coach Danny Brown said. “We’ve been in that situation a couple of times this year. This team has a lot of fight, but you just can’t have a scoreless quarter against anybody, let alone North. That’s not going to win you any ballgames.”
Kristen Lyons came up big for East defensively with two blocks and a steal. She was also a dominant presence on the boards with 10 rebounds, but fouled out late in the fourth.
Both teams finished with 40 rebounds. Liz Tynan led North (7-3) with eight boards.
North coach Pat McKee said his team needed to pull out a win after losing Tuesday night at Seymour.
“It happened to be East, a big rivalry game and that’s really important because of its nature,” McKee said. “But we need to beat whoever we played because we did not play well on Tuesday. We needed to play better. We didn’t play great, but we played great in stretches.”