All-state center Allie Dittmer did her part to help Eaton Rapids win its high school girls basketball season opener on Tuesday night.
The junior scored 23 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, but junior forward Bailey Baker contributed 12 points and four assists as well as the Greyhounds topped Olivet 48-28.
“Now we have two posts that can score,” Eaton Rapids coach Willis Whitmyer said. “Bailey Baker being able to shoot outside is going to open things up for Allie. They can’t double her, or Bailey will knock it down.”
Dittmer scored eight of her points, including the last two after a beautiful spin move, during a 13-0 run that erased an early 4-1 deficit.
“They’re really skilled down in the post. We knew that coming in, and we tried some things,” Olivet coach Rob Fleming said. “It wasn’t for a lack of effort. The (guards) know how to get them the ball. The (posts) work their body well to get the ball into position to score. They’re well-coached and very good.”
Olivet scored nine straight points to get as close as 19-15 in the second quarter thanks to pressure defense.
“That’s one of the things we’re going to try to do is wear some people out a little bit,” Fleming said. “Maybe we got a little bit tired because it’s the first game of the year.”
“We tried to force things,” Whitmyer said. “We really want to push the ball and get to that next level, but we also want to be smart about it.
“Give credit to Olivet. They fought hard and got us to turn the ball over a few times. That got them back in it before we got back to what is going to be our bread and butter most of the year.”
Baker scored four points and Dittmer three in a 7-0 run that increased the Greyhounds’ lead to 26-15 at halftime.
The Eagles made just 3 of 14 free throws in the first three quarters before sinking 6 of 10 in the fourth.
“For us to even be in a game with Eaton Rapids, we’ve got to make our free throws and we didn’t,” Fleming said.
Junior Hayley Walkowski led Olivet with nine points, seven rebounds and five steals. Sophomore Aleena Janousek was the Eagles’ leading rebounder with eight.