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Edison dominates New London in season opener

By JOSH MORGRET • Nov 26, 2018 at 11:01 PM

MILAN — Not even an untied shoe could prevent Alana Fidler from scoring on Monday.

The 5-foot-10 senior drove the right side of the line and scored with one of her shoes untied in the fourth quarter against New London.

That was the kind of night the Wildcats had.

Fidler led the Chargers with 14 points and New London committed 26 turnovers as Edison picked up a 56-30 non-league win over the Wildcats in the season opener at Edison High School.

"Alana picked up where she left off last year," Edison coach Tracey Moyer said. "She is one of our leading scorers from last year and she knew she would have to shoulder quite a bit. Tonight, she got help from her friends."

Fidler was backed by the 12 points and four rebounds from Molly Houser and Jessica Stoll's eight points and four rebounds. Hannah Vitaz added seven points and a team-high six rebounds, while Mariah Medina scored six points off of the bench.

"It makes the team harder to beat," said Moyer of the balanced scoring. "You can not key on one or two people. You have to guard all five players out there. As the year goes on, that will be a huge help for us."

The Chargers (1-0) scored the first 10 points of the game to seize command. A basket by Gabby Ledbetter got the Wildcats (0-1) on the board, but Houser's bucket with 1:20 left in the opening quarter gave Edison a 12-2 lead after eight minutes.

"When we get in those holes, it is hard for us to dig ourselves out because of our defensive intensity," New London coach Eric Mitchell said. "It is not where it needs to be. That is something the girls know we have to improve on."

The teams played evenly over the first half of the second quarter. With 3:49 left until halftime, Kiaya Thierry drilled a 3-pointer for New London, but was also fouled after the shot, which led to a one-and-one situation for the sophomore. She made both free throws, and the Wildcats were within six points.

Later, with the margin still at six points, Edison finished the half strong to seize command again. Fidler scored twice and Jayla Medina went coast-to-coast off of a rebound to give the Chargers a 29-17 lead at halftime. Edison did not commit a turnover in the second quarter.

"We have got some athletic girls and we said we have to use that," Moyer said. "We wanted to pressure them and make it hard for them to get the ball into Ledbetter. We then wanted to get out on the break and go. We need to use our athleticism a lot more than we did last year."

The scoring drought continued for the Wildcats into the third quarter. Constant pressure by the Edison guards forced numerous turnovers by New London, often leading to easy buckets for Edison. Fidler and Vitaz scored before two free throws by Stoll pushed the lead to 35-17.

Stoll and Fidler each hit short jumpers to extend the lead further. Thierry then split two free throws to end the 16-0 run by the Chargers over 9:33 of game time.

"That is our senior leadership," Moyer said. "We have six seniors on the team and they have been in situations before. Now, they do not let anything rattle them. They just come back and play their game."

Later, Thierry hit her second 3-pointer of the night, capping a 10:10 run without a field goal for the Wildcats. Edison led, 40-22, after three quarters.

The defensive intensity by the Chargers did not let up in the fourth quarter. A 14-2 run by Edison put the game even further out of reach.

The Chargers committed just eight turnovers including three in the final three quarters combined.

"They bring back all five starters from a good team," Mitchell said. "No, it does not look like it after a 26-point loss, but I like where we are. Edison is just a strong, physical team. We are not going to see posts that play my post (Ledbetter) the way Edison did. They beat her up. They were more physical."

Ledbetter, a 6-3 post, was held in check by the Edison defense most of the night, finishing with seven points and eight rebounds.

"Gabby is a nice player and being as tall as she is, we did not have anybody there (to guard her)," Moyer said. "We had to have someone constantly up in their faces and make it hard for them to get her the ball."

For the Wildcats, it is only the first game.

“If we can build from this, I like where we could go this year,” Mitchell said. “I think we can contend and compete every night with teams. We can not have 26-point blowouts. That will make for a long year for us."

NEW LONDON (0-1)

Korah Schmidt 1-0—2, Alexia Duggar 2-2—6, Kiaya Thierry 2-3—9, Megan Conrad 1-0—2, Gabby Ledbetter 3-1—7, Sierra Hose 2-0—4. TOTALS 11-6—30.

EDISON (1-0)

Aliyah Caporini 1-2—4, Molly Houser 6-0—12, Alana Fidler 6-2—14, Hannah Vitaz 3-1—6, Jessica Stoll 3-2—8,, Mariah Medina 3-0—6, Jayla Medina 1-1—3, Lilli Schuster 1-0—2. TOTALS 24-8—56.

N. London 2 15 5 8 — 30

Edison 12 17 11 16 — 56

3-point FGs: (NL) Thierry 2

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