CONNORVILLE - Prior to the start of the season, Bellaire coach Marci Bonar said she wanted her team to win every quarter this season.
So far, so good.
The Big Reds debuted in fine fashion Monday night with a 63-31 Buckeye 8 thumping of homestanding Buckeye Local.
''We held them to 31 points, which was great,'' Bonar said. ''They scored 10 in the first quarter and we told the girls that we can't let them score more than that a quarter. The girls did a nice job.''
Bellaire jumped out to an 8-0 lead and never looked back. Senior Myleah Green tallied six of her 10 points in the opening eight minutes and sophomore Keirstyn Kidder added five of her game-high 21 as the visitors led 19-10.
The Panthers turned the ball over 10 times in the first quarter, and added eight more in the second as Bellaire roared to a 39-19 halftime advantage.
''We seemed to be in the right place all the time defensively,'' Bonar said of the first-half. "We played very aggressive, but we didn't foul, and that was a key. That was fun to watch.''
It wasn't so nice for Buckeye Local coach Willy Luther.
''We've been talking in practices and scrimmages about having strong starts, but we dug ourselves a hole early and weren't able to get out of it,'' he said. ''We just kept getting further and further behind, and at the end when you looked up at the scoreboard, the results weren't very favorable for us.
''We've got to do a much better job of valuing the basketball. We need to take care of the basketball during each possession and learn to be more aggressive when it is in our hands. A lot of our turnovers were non-aggressive turnovers and those are the kind that are very difficult to take as a coach.''
Although Bellaire allowed 11 points in the third quarter, it scored 15 itself to build a commanding 54-30 lead heading into the final stanza.
Junior Cari Crozier netted seven of her 15 points in the third-quarter surge.
''These girls give 100 percent all the time and I never have to question their effort,'' Bonar said.
Crozier added 15 for the Big Reds, while Green and freshman Nina Crook evenly divided 20, with Crook rainbowing in a trio of treys.
''Keirstyn and Cari played very well together. We were able to get the rebound and get the ball out and upcourt,'' Bonar said. ''We will have to do that because we are so small.''
Kayla Fillipovich was the Panthers' lone double-figure scorer with 10 points. She also pulled down five rebounds despite playing with a torn ACL.
''She was just released to play last week,'' Luther said of his 5-foot-11 senior. ''She really hasn't practiced much because of the injury, but she will get into shape really quick.''