PAOLA — The Paola High School girls basketball team is full of athletes. Ottawa could not match up with all those players Tuesday in Paola.
The Panthers ran at will and executed well in the half court in handing Ottawa a 57-46 loss.
“They are one of the top teams in 4A,” Ottawa coach Kelli Fischer said about the fourth-ranked Panthers. “They got shooters ... defensive people.
“Normally we don’t get beat in transition. We got hammered tonight. It was the difference in the game.”
Paola built a 20-point lead because of the transition game in the second half.
“It is disappointing because we were playing so well,” Fischer said. “We still have to play and do things fundamentally right.”
Fischer said Ottawa can’t beat a team like Paola without playing at a top level.
“How many layups did we miss,” Fischer said. “We executed a lot of stuff well, but we did not finish at the basket. We have to learn from this.”
It was the second straight game Ottawa has been limited offensively to Brette Moore, Angel Natt and Corie Fischer.
“Make the three beat us,” Fischer said. “That is not bad strategy. Corie and Brette had three different people guarding them.”
Ottawa fell behind 44-24 at the end of third quarter. The Cyclones scored 22 points in the final quarter.
Fischer netted 15 of her career-high 26 points in the fourth quarter. Moore had seven of her 13 in the final eight minutes.
Ottawa (8-9, 4-5) plays Friday at home against Baldwin.
“We have another tough game on Friday,” Fischer said.
Paola (57) — Williams 8, Lauden 8, Moala 8, Paulsen 10, L. Johnson 15, Frederick 4, Mader 1, E. Johnson 1, Boyer 2.
Ottawa (46) — Moore 13, Natt 7, Fischer 26.