Marion girls win sub-state opener

Kourtney Hansen scores off her own steal to give Marion an 8-0 lead over Central Heights Monday. Hansen led all scorers with 27 points in Marion’s 52-34 victory.The third-seeded Marion girls defeated No. 6 Central Heights, 52-34, Monday in the quarterfinals of the Class 3A Mission Valley sub-state.

Marion enjoyed a 10-0 start to the game, forcing Central Heights into seven turnovers in its first eight possessions. Kourtney Hansen and Taelyn Pagel accounted for the Warrior scoring during that stretch. The Warriors then caught the turnover bug on their next four possessions, allowing the Vikings to trim the margin to 10-6. But Marion used a 9-2 end to the period to lead, 19-8.

Central Heights scored the first three points of the second quarter, then went 5:14 without scoring. By that point, Marion’s lead had grown to 30-11. The Vikings scored the half’s final five points for a 30-16 margin at intermission.

Marion enjoyed a 20-point lead, 43-23, when Hansen scored with 1:36 left in the third quarter, and the period ended with the Warriors in front, 43-26.

Central Heights narrowed the gap to 43-30 before Hansen broke Marion’s scoring drought with a basket with 4:37 to play and went on to score seven of Marion’s nine fourth-quarter points, to lead all scorers with 27 points for the game.

“Early in the game, I was most pleased that we were getting out and running because I thought we were going to be the more athletic team,” coach Kelly Robson said. “We got off to a really good start that way.”

Marion will play the winner of Wellsville and Osage City Thursday at Mission Valley in the semifinals.

Berean—Marion had difficulty scoring against Berean’s stifling defense in a 35-20 loss Tuesday.

Marion struggled to get looks in the paint and made just two of 13 attempts from the field in the first half (15 percent). Marion turned the ball over 12 times. However, the visiting Warriors did limit Berean to 15 first-half points on 7-for-15 shooting (47 percent) and turned them over 10 times.

The pace of the game slowed from the start, as Berean made the game’s first basket two minutes in, then Kourtney Hansen tied the game at 2 with a basket about three minutes later. That was Marion’s only basket in the quarter. Berean scored twice in the final 1:09 to lead, 6-2, at the first break.

After Berean scored twice more, Marion scored all three of its second-quarter points in a 25-second span, thanks to a free-throw by Hansen and a basket by Marissa Jacobson at the 4:27 mark. Lizzi Landis scored the final five points of the quarter. Landis drained a three-pointer with 3:41 to go, giving Berean a 15-5 lead, and neither team scored again before halftime.

Berean built a 19-5 lead after the break before Taelyn Pagel broke Marion’s 6:35-long scoring drought with a three-pointer. Jessi Lewman scored four of Marion’s final six points of the quarter, bringing the score to 21-14 in favor of Berean at the final break.

Berean turned the ball over on four of its first five possessions, but Marion couldn’t capitalize, missing the first five shots attempted and making one free-throw. Sam Richmond scored Marion’s first basket of the quarter with 2:16 left in the game, and in the end, Berean earned the 15-point victory.

Three Warriors scored four points: Hansen, Lewman and Alli Molleker.

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