ELYRIA — Tristyn Thurman was motivated Wednesday night.
The 5-foot-6 senior point guard put her emotions aside and led Elyria to a 55-37 win over North Olmsted in non-conference play.
“(Wednesday) was a hard night for all of us,” Thurman said. “I’m sure you’ve heard about Kerrigan’s (Williams) brother. We all wanted to come out hot and play for her and her family.”
Williams’ brother Kayden, a junior at Keystone High School, died in an automobile accident early Wednesday morning. Kerrigan is a member of Elyria’s freshman basketball team.
“I decided I needed to dedicate this game to her and her family,” Thurman said. “We have to win. I told all (my teammates), we need to play like we do in practice. We always play great in practice. We always have good practices but it’s never showed on the court. (Wednesday) we had to play like we really mean it and where our heart’s supposed to be.”
Thurman was clearly the difference. She hit the first 3-pointer she tried and finished with 19 points to go with strong defense and ballhandling. She helped on double-teaming the ball and created many scoring opportunities for herself and for her teammates.
“Thurman was fantastic,” North Olmsted coach John McDermott said. “I told those guys ‘Give her the three (3-pointer). ‘She won’t hit it and she proved me 100 percent wrong. She’s a good, little player. That knocked us out. We had no answer for it.”
Elyria coach Tony Brown wasn’t surprised by Thurman’s play, he just wants to see it more often.
“Tristyn’s had what … 17, 19, 18 and then you know five,” Brown said of her scoring this year. “It’s tough when we’re kind of looking at her to be the leader, the up-lifter and she has the ability to do so and there are times when I’m demanding. I’m asking a lot out of her because I think she can shoulder it.”
The Pioneers (4-6) held the Eagles (3-7) scoreless for two big stretches. North Olmsted didn’t score for the first 4:52 of the second quarter and the first 6:10 of the fourth. Elyria ran off 11 unanswered points over the course of the first stretch and added 10 more to start the fourth quarter in putting away the game.
Elyria’s double teams and half-court pressure — led by Thurman and senior Tiffany Means – took its toll on the Eagles.
“That’s been the North Olmsted way unfortunately,” McDermott said. “We just can’t find a constant scorer.”
Anne Bloomfield and Ronette Rahmon-Sumlin led the Eagles with eight points each, DeeAnna Yarian had seven and Lindsey VanNess and Olivia Passafiume scored six apiece.
“Defensive effort was really good,” said 6-foot senior Chelsea Farris, who racked up another double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. “We wanted to play for one of our friend (Williams). We wanted to work hard for her and make something special out of it.”
Farris also blocked a couple of shots and had three assists. Means had nine points while Michaela King grabbed seven rebounds and Sylvannah Bauer five.
Contact Tim Gebhardt at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
Elyria 55, North Olmsted 37
NORTH OLMSTED (37): Lindsey Van Ness 3-0-6, Mary Bloomfield 0-0-0, Anne Bloomfield 3-2-8, DeeAnna Yarian 2-3-7, Ronette Rahmon-Sumlin 3-2-8, Olivia Passafiume 1-3-6, Alexandra Balson 1-0-2, Jessica Yelsik 0-0-0, Amira Massey 0-0-0, Abigail Beck 0-0-0, Samantha Wengstrom 0-0-0. Totals 13-10-37.
ELYRIA (55): Tristyn Thurman 7-3-19, Angelina Aulisio 1-0-2, Chelsey Farris 5-1-11, Tiffany Means 4-0-9, Michaela King 1-2-4, Myanna Hawkins 1-0-2, Toni McClinton 0-0-0, Tylese Noble 3-0-6, Sylvannah Bauer 1-0-2, Justyce Nelson 0-0-0. Totals 23-6-55.
North Olmsted 14 5 14 4 — 37
Elyria 13 16 10 16 — 55
Three-point goals: North Olmsted 1-10 (Passafiume). Elyria 3-17 (Thurman 2, Means). Field goals: North Olmsted 13-35 (37 percent), Elyria 23-52 (44 percent). Free throws: North Olmsted 10-20 (50 percent), Elyria 6-11 (54 percent). Rebounds: North Olmsted 24 (Rahmon-Sumlin 5), Elyria 35 (Farris 11). Turnovers: North Olmsted 20, Elyria 19. Fouls: North Olmsted 13, Elyria 16. Fouled out: Van Ness.
Junior varsity: North Olmsted, 24-15