‘Super player’ Abby Ogle sparks Baldwin to dominant win over Frontenac

EMPORIA — The words didn’t need to be said, but they were a helpful reminder.

Make no mistake, the top-seeded Baldwin girls basketball team won its opening matchup at the 4A Division II state tournament in the opening minutes. About an hour before the buzzer sounded on the 86-46 win, the Bulldogs were already ahead by 24, exploding for a 32-point first quarter while holding Frontenac (9-14) to just eight points.

But as the teams returned to the floor, senior Abby Ogle reminded her squad exactly what they needed to do to finish out the half.

“Hey, keep this going,” she barked, gesturing with her index finger in a circular motion. “Keep this going.”

Evidently, there was none more obedient of the advice than Ogle. Less than a minute later, she came up with her fifth steal of the half — she tabbed four in the first quarter — and started a fast break that led to a Kayla Kurtz layup.

It was that kind of day.

“She’s that kind of girl,” said Baldwin coach Bob Martin. “She can really dominate games. … When she’s out there, she’s a super player.”

That play, which put the Bulldogs ahead, 36-8, was only one bucket of a mammoth run to put the game out of reach. Ahead by five points, 10-5, early in the first quarter, the Bulldogs embarked on a 30-3 spurt to pull ahead, 40-8. And they did it with a varying cast of characters.

Ogle, who tallied seven points, four assists and five steals in the first half, needed only four minutes to do so.

“I was really nervous,” she later said of the performance. “So I just used that to my advantage.”

Ogle picked up her third foul a minute into the second quarter, but her teammates picked her up.

Six different Bulldogs tabbed a steal in the first half. Four of them — Abby Ogle, Macey Frost, McKinley Markley and Kate Ogle — had at least two. Four different Bulldogs scored seven or more in the half, while Kurtz (11) and Kate Ogle (10) reached double figures in scoring.

“You want to get off to a good start and, hopefully, things fall into place,” said Martin. “And we really did. We showed up tonight, and that was good to see.”

The turnover margin at the half was a lopsided 21-5. It only continued to get worse as play resumed.

The Bulldogs scored the first eight points of the second half, which included a pair of 3-pointers from Reilly Stewart. They took their first 40-point lead of the game at the 4:29 mark in the third quarter and continued to roll, forcing 31 turnovers before committing 10 of their own.

Baldwin led by as many as 46 in the second half, with Josephine Boyle knocking in a 3-pointer to put her side up, 81-35, in the fourth quarter. Stewart finished with a game-high 14 points. Abby Ogle added 13 points, seven assists and six steals, while Kate Ogle tabbed 12 points and five boards.

Now 22-1 on the year, Baldwin will face off against fourth-seeded Hugoton (16-7) at 6:30 p.m. Friday in White Auditorium.

“We’re super pumped. We haven’t been back here since our sophomore year and we lost first round,” said Abby Ogle. “We’re really pumped and really excited because we’ve got a shot this year. We just want to use it.”

Frontenac (46)

Madison Davis 2-5 2-2 6, Karma Fields 2-9 0-0 6, Bria Ginavan 0-2 2-2 2, Taylor Peterson 3-8 3-3 10, Lauren Harper 2-5 1-2 5, Skylar Baker 1-4 0-4 2, Reagen Hipfl 1-2 2-4 4, Jadyn Meyer 1-3 3-3 5, Gracen Hipfl 0-0 6-6 6, Katlyn Sellars 0-1 0-0 0, Katelin Randall 0-0 0-0 0, Abby Butcher 0-0 0-2 0. Totals 12-39 19-29 46.

Baldwin (86)

Reilly Stewart 4-7 2-2 14, Carly Lindenmeyer 0-4 1-2 1, Abby Ogle 6-10 1-1 13, Kayla Kurtz 5-10 0-0 11, Kate Ogle 6-9 0-1 12, Macey Frost 1-9 2-2 5, McKinley Markley 4-5 1-2 11, Rian Gere 1-3 0-0 2, Alexia Nelson 1-3 0-0 2, Kailee Johnson 2-5 0-0 4, Josephine Boyle 2-7 0-0 5, Paige Ellis 2-5 2-2 6. Totals 34-77 9-12 86.

Frontenac 8 11 10 17 — 46

Baldwin 32 19 15 20 — 86

Three-point goals: Frontenac 3-11 (Fields 2, Peterson 1); Baldwin 9-29 (Stewart 4, Markley 2, Kurtz, Boyle, Frost 1). Fouled out: Gere. Turnovers: Frontenac 33, Baldwin 11.