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Wesleyan dominates Bremen in second half

Photo: Craig Cappy<br> Wesleyan's Grace Leah Baughn (4) drives against Bremen's Jordan Hill (22) during the second round of the Class A playoffs on Tuesday.

Photo: Craig Cappy
Wesleyan's Grace Leah Baughn (4) drives against Bremen's Jordan Hill (22) during the second round of the Class A playoffs on Tuesday.

NORCROSS — The standards are pretty high for the Wesleyan girls basketball team. That’s why they got chewed on a little at halftime, even though they were winning their Class A second-round playoff game by an insurmountable 24 points.

The second half was a bit more to the liking of coach Jan Azar, who watched her three-time defending state champion girls limit Bremen to a pair of field goals — both 3-pointers — and only six points in the second half.

No. 1-ranked Wesleyan (28-2) didn’t allow a point in the final period and dispatched the visitors 91-27 at Yancey Gymnasium.

“The first half was frustrating,” Azar said. “They spent a lot of time at the free-throw line because we spent too much time reaching in for the ball and not playing defense.”

Bremen (19-9) had five field goals in the first half but took 20 free throws and made 10. The Blue Devils even had the audacity to tie the game at 6-6 with 2:12 left in the first half, a feat that irritated Wesleyan to such a degree that it outscored the Devils 14-1 to begin another rout.

By the time halftime arrived, Wesleyan had a 45-21 lead. The Wolves emerged from the locker room to score the first six points and use a 17-3 blitz to put an end to any notion of an upset and coast to their 18th straight win.

“I was really pleased with the second half,” Azar said. “At halftime we talked about how we wanted to play. Bremen did a good job running their stuff and we wanted to play better defense and quit putting them at the line.”

Bremen did not shoot a free throw in the second half. Much of the time the Devils looked like a hockey team that was playing short-handed. They had trouble getting the ball across midcourt and were limited to one shot on most occasions.

Wesleyan had five girls in double figures: Grace Leah Baughn with 18 points and seven rebounds, Katie Frerking with 14 points and four rebounds, Holli Wilkins with 12 points and eight rebounds, Taylor Blackmon with 12 points and four rebounds, and Joshlyn Belcher with 11 points, which included three 3-pointers.

Wesleyan will play the winner of the game between Gordon-Lee and Wilkinson County on Saturday at 4 p.m. at Marietta High School in the Class A quarterfinals.