The Marion girls basketball team finished as the 3A state runners up with a 56-45 loss to Thomas More Prep in the state championship game Saturday in Hutchinson.
Eventhough the Warriors fell short of the 3A state championship, they don?t think of the trip to Hutch as a failure.
?I don?t think we fell short,? said Marion senior Lindsay Hett who played the state championship game on her 18th?birthday. ?We?re here, we?re champions in our hearts and we played a great game.?
?Second in state, that?s still a great accomplishment,? said Marion senior Julia Zeiner. ?We did good throughout the season and kept getting better and better each week and just kept pushing throughout the whole time.?
With approximately three minutes left to play in the fourth quarter, Marion cut the Thomas More Prep lead to 41-40 with a Whitney Gordon put back of a missed Kayley Heerey three. Thats when the Monarchs caught fire.
TMP built a 49-42 lead in the next minute courtesy of?two three-point baskets. Thomas More Prep finished out the game knocking down 9-of-10 free throws to seal the victory and the state title.
?That was tough when everything they put up went in,? said Zeiner. ?We knew we had to keep playing hard and we couldn?t give up, we couldn?t just die. We had to keep going there.?
Marion played from behind for the most part the whole game, trailing by as much as 11 in the second quarter. Every time the Warriors worked themselves back into the game, TMP would make a run.
?We needed some shots to fall,” said Marion coach Randy Savage “I thought we played very well defensively. We held them to 34 percent shooting. We needed two or three of them to bounce in that didn?t.?
The Monarchs? Rachel Adams led all scorers with 18 points, seven rebounds. Jessa Stramel had 13 points.
Marion was led by Zeiner with 13 points, six rebounds. Heerey finished with 11 points, seven rebounds. Hett had 10 points, five rebounds, four assists. Gordon scored seven points and grabbed nine rebounds.
Marion finishes the season 21-6 overall, 8-3 in the MCAA.
Photos by Don Ratzlaff/Free Press