Photo by Cody Bahn // MOVING ON: Senior Emily Kiser logged a double-double with 30 points and 11 rebounds in Noblesville's 72-44 win over Anderson in the first round of Class 4A Sectional 8.
Photo by Cody Bahn // MOVING ON: Senior Emily Kiser logged a double-double with 30 points and 11 rebounds in Noblesville's 72-44 win over Anderson in the first round of Class 4A Sectional 8.

FISHERS – On a tournament-time Tuesday in late January, when it really counts, the Noblesville Millers accomplished something they struggled to do in mid-December. They put the Anderson Indians away.

In a rematch of a regular season nail-biter, Noblesville defeated Anderson by a wide margin, 72-44, pulling away in the second half in the opening round of sectional play at Fishers High School.

In the teams’ first matchup, the Millers escaped with only a one-point victory at home in overtime, allowing the Indians to stay in it until the very end. On Tuesday, Noblesville didn’t leave it to chance, outscoring Anderson 39-18 in the second half.

“The first time we played them, we just let them hang around and hang around,” Noblesville head coach Donna Buckley said. “They really should have beat us the first time. This time we talked about, ‘when you get a chance to put them away, put them away.’ And our kids did that.”

The Millers were led by two players who together outscored the entire Anderson roster by six, 50-44. The dominant 6’3 senior forward Emily Kiser finished with a game-high 30 points, well north of her 20.7 season average. Speedy junior guard Maddie Knight added 20 points.

“I thought we overall played pretty well,” Buckley said. “We did a nice job of just being aggressive on both ends of the floor. Again, Emily (Kiser) did a nice job setting the tone in the paint, and Maddie Knight played really well taking it to the basket.”

Noblesville came out firing, jumping out to a 13-2 lead thanks largely to two 3-pointers from Knight and one from junior Mallory Johnson. 
But spurred on by aggressive play of freshman Tyra Ford and outside shooting from junior Staisha Hamilton, the Indians battled back. Anderson cut the Miller lead to 19-10 by the end of the first quarter and down to 33-26 by halftime. Hamilton led all scorers at the half with 12 points off four-made 3's.

In the second half, the Indians remained aggressive by taking the ball to the basket and crashing the offensive glass repeatedly, but they just couldn’t get shots to fall. As a team, Anderson finished an abysmal 17-of-64 (27 percent) from the field.

“They’re a real emotional team,” Buckley said. “When they’re good, as you saw in the first half, they’re right there with us, and when they get down, they can really get down.”

The Millers took advantage of Anderson’s struggles. Noblesville shot the ball well, finishing at 50 percent (28-of-56) from the field with numerous good looks in the paint.

Kiser was particularly effective after halftime. The Michigan-commit towered over smaller defenders throughout and poured in eight points in the third quarter and 12 more in the fourth.

The win over the Indians extends the Millers’ current win streak to eight. Noblesville (15-7) advances to play top-ranked Carmel (22-2) in a Sectional No. 8 semi-final. Carmel defeated Noblesville 78-41 earlier in the season.