Huskies reach championship, fall to Fairfield

Hamilton Heights reached the championship game of the Class 3A Columbia City regional on Saturday.
The Huskies beat Marion 50-37 in the semi-final. Heights got off to a fantastic start, leading 15-2 after the first quarter. The Huskies were able to maintain that advantage for the remainder of the game, as they were up 24-13 at halftime.
Heights had a very efficient shooting day against the Giants, making 18 of their 27 field goal attempts – exactly two-thirds of their shots went in. Bayleigh Runner led the way for the Huskies with 18 points, while Lauryn Wiley added 14 points. Ana Collar pulled seven rebounds and Kayla Kirtley collected five. Runner dished out seven assists.
Heights took on No. 3-ranked Fairfield in the championship game, falling 40-21. The Huskies kept pace with the Falcons in the first half, only trailing 20-16 at halftime. But after that, Fairfield ramped up its defense, only allowing Heights five points in the second half.
Runner led the Huskies with six points. Both she and Collar had five rebounds, with Collar also making four steals in the game.
Heights finished its season with a 20-8 record, the first time it broke the 20-win mark since the 2012-13 season – the same year the Huskies reached the 3A state final. The 2012-13 campaign was also the last time Heights had won a sectional; the Huskies broke that drought last week with a victory at the Blackford sectional.
Three seniors graduate from the Heights program: Lexi Branham, Ana Collar and Kayla Kirtley.

SEMI-FINAL GAME
Heights 50, Marion 37
Heights FG FT TP PF
Ana Collar 4-6 1-5 9 1
Bayleigh Runner 6-8 6-7 18 4
Kayla Kirtley 2-2 1-2 6 2
Lexi Branham 2-4 2-6 6 3
Lauryn Wiley 4-7 2-2 11 3
Payton Dissett 0-0 0-0 0 0
Totals 18-27 12-22 50 13
Score by Quarters
Heights 15 9 12 14 – 50
Marion 2 11 10 14 – 37
Heights 3-point shooting (2-4) Wiley 1-2, Kirtley 1-1, Branham 0-1.
Heights rebounds (20) Collar 7, Kirtley 5, Branham 4, Wiley 4.

CHAMPIONSHIP
Fairfield 40, Heights 21
Heights FG FT TP PF
Ana Collar 2-4 1-2 5 1
Bayleigh Runner 1-9 3-4 6 4
Kayla Kirtley 1-7 0-0 2 2
Lexi Branham 1-10 0-0 3 4
Lauryn Wiley 2-7 0-0 5 4
Payton Dissett 0-1 0-0 0 0
Totals 7-38 4-6 21 15
Score by Quarters
Heights 5 11 3 2 – 21
Fairfield 7 13 9 11 – 40
Heights 3-point shooting (3-23) Branham 1-8, Runner 1-6, Wiley 1-4, Kirtley 0-5.
Heights rebounds (16) Collar 5, Runner 5, Wiley 4, Branham 3.

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