By Ty Bartell


WINDHAM, Ohio — The Newton Falls Tigers claimed a hard-fought road playoff win against the Windham Bombers with a final score of 30-24, advancing to the next round of the Division IV, Region 13, Northeast 1 bracket.

In a matchup between two closely matched teams, the Tigers traveled to Portage County to take on the Bombers in a sectional semi-final showdown. Both teams had similar regular-season records, with the Tigers finishing 10-12 in the Gray Division of the Mahoning Valley Athletic Conference (MVAC) and the Bombers ending with an 11-11 record as part of the Stripes Division in the Northeastern Athletic Conference (NAC).

The game got off to a slow start, with a low-scoring first quarter that saw Newton Falls holding a slim 6-4 lead after eight minutes of play, propelled by a pair of 3-point shots by Dani Drake and Madison Davis. Defensive intensity continued into the second quarter, with both teams struggling to find scoring opportunities. The Tigers managed to maintain their lead, outscoring the Bombers 6-5 in the quarter to take a 12-9 advantage into halftime.

After the break, Windham fought back in the third quarter, matching Newton Falls basket for basket. Led by Briah Daniel and Lorena De Oliveria, the Bombers rallied to tie the game at 19-19 heading into the final quarter. However, the Tigers regained their momentum in the fourth quarter, posting an 11-5 period to secure the 30-24 playoff victory.
Dani Drake was named Player of the Game for the Tigers, leading all scorers with 10 points, including three made 3-point shots. She was supported by Morgan Kendall with 6 points, and

Kennedy Howard and Madison Davis with 5 points each. Windham’s offense was led by Lorena De Oliveria and Briah Daniel, who each contributed 10 points.

With the win, the 23rd-seeded Newton Falls Tigers advance to the sectional final, where they will face the winner of the matchup between the 25th-seeded St. Thomas Aquinas and the 13th-seeded East Canton.
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