The Aviano Lady Saints took charge of the American Schools in Italy League race Saturday by completing a two-game sweep of the American School of Milan.
“They were tough games,” Aviano coach Greg Mead said by telephone as his unbeaten squad bused home from Milan after claiming a 44-36 victory Saturday. “They’ve played together for three years, and they’re very well coached.”
Aviano (8-0 overall and in league play, not counting the two forfeits every league team has or will receive from the International School of Florence), prevailed Saturday behind 19 points and 12 rebounds from Kyerha Smith and 13 rebounds each from Katlyn Atchley and All-Europe center Jasmine Mailoto.
Saturday’s victory, combined with a 45-42 verdict Aviano fashioned on Friday behind 17 points by Smith, 13 by Mailoto and 11 by AnnMarie McClelland, put the Saints in the ASIL driver’s seat. With 2-6 Naples due in town this weekend, Aviano is likely to be facing 6-2 Vicenza on the road Feb. 11-12 needing just a single victory to nail down the crown.
Milan, which benefited from 22 points by Ivonne Marin on Friday, got Natalie Fostar into the scoring act Saturday and led 23-15 at halftime. But Aviano went on a 16-5 third-quarter run and held Fostar to 18 points and Marin 10 for the day to put the game away.
Milan (7-3) is scheduled to play at the American Overseas School of Rome on Friday and Saturday.
In other girls games of note:
Wiesbaden 56, Vilseck 54 (OT): Saturday at Vilseck, the unbeaten Lady Warriors need a 23-point day by Kelley Colbert to hold off the upset-minded Lady Falcons in a non-regional game.
Vilseck (2-6) rode a supreme effort from Jamila Harvey to the near-upset. Harvey scored a game-high 26 points, pulled down 14 rebounds, blocked four shots and posted three steals and three assists. But Wiesbaden (9-0) countered with Colbert’s scoring and its All-Europe sister act: LeAmber Thomas registered 13 points and 14 rebounds; LeAndra Thomas chalked up 12 points, nine rebounds, five assists, four steals and two blocks.
Both teams are to return to regional action this week. Wiesbaden will host Mannheim on Saturday in a Region II match-up; Vilseck is to host winless Bamberg on Friday and visit Bamberg on Saturday in Region III play.
Lakenheath 47, SHAPE 36: Saturday at Mons, Belgium, the Lancers salvaged a split of their two-game Region I series behind 21 points and five steals by Shaionica Speight and 14 Melissa Enriquez rebounds.
Ellie Bice added 10 rebounds for Lakenheath (6-4 overall, 3-1 in the region). Next up for the Lady Lancers is a non-regional home game Saturday against The American School in England.
SHAPE, which prevailed 44-41 Friday, fell to 5-6, 3-3 despite 16 points, four assists and three steals by Gina Rhett. Next up for the Lady Spartans is a non-regional home test Saturday against Ramstein.
Heidelberg 45, Bamberg 14: Saturday at Heidelberg, the Lady Lions remained perfect in the Region III race with a dominating victory over the defending European Division II champions.
Kylee Miller scored a game-high 10 points for Heidelberg (9-1, 8-0), which won 51-14 over Bamberg on Friday.
Heidelberg is to take this weekend off, gearing up for a home-and-home showdown against Patch, also unbeaten in Region III, on Feb. 11-12. Bamberg, which fell to 0-7, 0-5, is scheduled to host Black Forest Academy on Friday and Saturday.
Kaiserslautern 37, Baumholder 19: Friday at Kaiserslautern, Medina Gregory struck for a game-high 16 points to help the Lady Raiders stay unbeaten at 7-0 overall and 3-0 in Region II. Next up for both teams is a Tuesday return match at Baumholder.