Crestview senior Paige Motycka (34) drives to the basket during a Division III district semifinal game against Coldwater at Elida on Thursday night. (Photo courtesy Wyatt Richardson)
Crestview senior Paige Motycka (34) drives to the basket during a Division III district semifinal game against Coldwater at Elida on Thursday night. (Photo courtesy Wyatt Richardson)

ELIDA — Given a second chance, the Crestview girls basketball took advantage of it.

After surviving a turnover late in regulation that gave Coldwater a chance to salvage a win in the Division III district semi-finals at the Elida Fieldhouse, the Knights dominated the overtime session to record a 69-58 win over the Cavaliers.

With the win, the Lady Knights advance to Saturday’s district finals at Elida against top seeded Ottawa-Glandorf (22-2). The Lady Titans won the first game against Spencerville Thursday evening 64-27 to advance. Coldwater finishes the season at 19-5.

Crestview (18-6) never trailed in Thursday night’s semi-final against the second seeded Cavaliers as they held a double digit lead in the second quarter and were up 40-34 heading into the fourth quarter. The Lady Knight lead was seven points at 43-36 after a 3-point play by Lexi Gregory with 6:44 left.

Coldwater then went on a 7-0 run to tie the game at 43-43 on a Katie Alig basket. The game would be tied four more times in the quarter, the final time at 54-54 after the Cavaliers Kourtney Diller drained a 3-pointer with 9.8 seconds left. Crestview had a chance to make it a two possession game with 17 seconds left, but Lyvia Black could only hit 1-of-2 free throw chances leaving it a three point game.

After Miller’s basket, the Knights turned the ball over giving Coldwater a chance to win the game in regulation. A jumper by Diller in the lane was off the mark sending the game into overtime.

In overtime, two free throws by Paige Motycka gave Crestview the lead for good at 56-54. The Lady Knights went on a 9-2 run to start overtime as Motycka scored six of the points, four of them at the line as Crestview hit 9-of-10 at the line in the extra period. The only points for the Cavaliers during that run were two free throws Gilliland. Coldwater was just 1-of-7 shooting in overtime as their lone basket was by Lauren Bruns with 46 seconds left to play. By then the Lady Knights had a 63-58 lead.

Four more free throws by Motycka and a late basket by Black accounted for the final score.

“I was proud of our effort,” Crestview coach Mark Gregory said. “I was disappointed with things that happened at the end of regulation, as far as fouls, but this team has battled all season long and especially during this 13 game winning streak, they just have found a way. That’s what I’m so proud of girls for, just finding a way each and every night.

“Paige did what she has done every game for us. She played every minute tonight and was probably a little tired, but in the overtime she regained her focus and hit some big shots for us at the line.”

“We had always held her (Motycka) in check in previous games. This is the first time she has had a good game being the third time we have played them,” Coldwater coach Connie May said. “She stepped up when it needed to be. It was hard not to have our floor general out there and do the things we needed to do. The girls we had out there did the necessary stuff to give us a chance.”

May was talking about senior guard Maura Hoying who departed the game in the third quarter after aggravating a nagging shoulder injury. Hoying had hurt the shoulder in the second quarter and sat out the rest of the half before returning in the third quarter to hit a big three that ignited a Coldwater rally.

The game started with the defenses controlling play as the score was 6-6 before Motycka went on a 4-0 run to give Crestview a 10-6 lead. They would lead 12-8 after one quarter before going on an 8-0 run to start the second quarter for a 20-8 lead. Bailey Gregory and Lexi Gregory both hit three-pointers during that run for the Knights.

Crestview’s lead grew to 25-10 on a Black three-pointer before Coldwater went on a 9-0 run to trail 25-19 at the break. In the third quarter, the Knights were up 29-24 after a Motycka basket before the Cavaliers went on a 5-0 run to tie the contest at 29-29 on a three by Olivia Harlamert. Crestview never surrendered the lead as a Motycka basket returned the lead to them and they would expand that to 40-34 after 24 minutes.

“That was huge,” Gregory said of not losing the lead. “I kept looking at the clock, the score and telling myself I didn’t want to get behind to these guys because they are such a good team. Again that’s kind of how it’s been, we find ways to stay above water. We get a big lead and we might give it back, but I’m just proud of our effort tonight and the rebounding.”

Motycka took game scoring honors as she finished with 26 points as she went 14-of-18 at the line. She also grabbed 15 rebounds. Black added 16 points and Lexi Gregory finished with 13 points and six assists.

Diller paced Cold water with 17 points, while Gilliland had 14 points and 11 rebounds. Hoying finished with 11 points for the Cavaliers.

* * *

Coldwater 18-43 17-21 58: Kourtney Diller 6-2-17; Olivia Harlamert 1-1-4; Maura Hoying 4-2-11; Lauren Gilliland 3-8-14; Lauren Bruns 1-4-6; Katie Alig 2-0-4; Grace Bruns 1-0-2; Mara Dues 0-0-0; Alli May 0-0-0.

Crestview 21-43 22-31 69: Lexi Gregory 5-1-13; Ally McCoy 4-0-8; Lyvia Black 4-6-16; Olivia Cunningham 1-0-3; Paige Motycka 6-14-26; Lizzie Bowen 0-0-0; Bailey Gregory 1-0-3; Hailey Spieth 0-0-0.

Coldwater 8 11 15 20 4 - 58

Crestview 12 13 15 14 15 - 69

Three-point goals: Coldwater 5-14 (Diller 3, Harlamert 1, Hoying 1); Crestview 5-12 (L. Gregory 2, Black 2, B. Gregory 1).

Rebounds: Coldwater 27 (Gilliand 11); Crestview 25 (Motycka 15).

Turnovers: Coldwater 19. Crestview 13.