Vikings punish Dowagiac

By By DAN WEISS / Niles Daily Star
NILES -- As if just playing against a powerful team like Niles wasn't bad enough for the Dowagiac varsity basketball team Tuesday night, the Chieftains had to face the Vikings after a loss.
Niles lost to Loy Norrix last Thursday night and took out some frustrations on Dowagiac Tuesday in a 57-15 Big-16 West Division blowout.
Niles wasted no time in showing the Chieftains who was boss, making a 14-0 run to end the first quarter with a 23-6 lead. Sophomore Brandie Radde made three 3-pointers and scored 13 points in the first period.
Dowagiac committed 12 turnovers in the first quarter and had 30 in the game.
As the game wore on, the Niles offense shifted gears and used its height to an advantage. Juniors Melissa Olsen and Kate Whittaker and freshman Colombe Martin combined for 20 points in the low post. Martin's eight points were a career-high and Olsen tied the school record for career blocked shots with a block of Dowagiac's Jennifer Pilot in the first quarter.
Niles, now 13-3 overall and 5-0 in West Division play, hosts Benton Harbor Thursday night.
Radde finished with a game-high 16 points while Olsen added 10. Amber Peters scored just two points but had five assists and four steals. Ashley Pingel also scored seven.
Dowagiac slipped to 3-13 on the year and 0-5 in the West Division. Brianne Reist led the Chieftains with five points.
The Niles junior varsity team beat Dowagiac 49-24, led by Chardae Ross with 13 points. Nicole Fink added 10 points.
Niles…………57
Dowagiac….15
Niles: Ashley Pingel 3 0-0 7, Amber Peters 2 0-0 4, Jessica Johnson 2 0-0 4, Leigh Tyler 1 0-0 2, Brandie Radde 6 0-0 16, Sarah Dreher 1 0-0 2, Megan Scameheorn 0 0-0 0, Kate Whittaker 1 0-0 2, Colombe Martin 3 2-2 8, Melissa Olsen 5 0-0 10, Ashley Spriggs 1 0-2 2. Totals: 25 2-4 57
Dowagiac: Ashley Brewer 0 0-0 0, Amy Wood 1 0-2 2, Brittany Winters 0 0-0 0, Brianne Reist 0 5-6 5, Jenny Pilot 2 0-0 4, Brittney Reist 2 0-0 4. Totals: 5 5-8 15
Niles 23 20 10 4--57
Dowagiac 6 4 1 4--15
3-point shooting: Niles 5 (Radde 4, Pingel), Dowagiac none. Team fouls (fouled out): Niles 7 (none), Dowagiac 5 (none). Team records: Niles 13-3 (5-0 SMAC West), Dowagiac 3-13 (0-5)

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