With two victories last week, the Marion girls’ basketball improved their record to 7-1 in Heart of America league play and 15-4 overall.
Elyria Christian—Marion earned a non-league victory Friday, 47-29.
The Warriors built a 10-5 lead after one quarter, led by Kourtney Hansen with four points. Sam Richmond made a 3-pointer, the first of two on the night.
Scoring in the second quarter was more evenly matched with Marion holding a 9-8 edge. Courtney Herzet hit a pair of 2-point baskets, and Marion led 19-13 at halftime.
The Warriors enjoyed their most productive offensive quarter in the third period, outscoring the home team 15-10. Richmond contributed seven points, including her second 3-pointer of the night. The Warriors led 34-23 at the final break.
Marion sealed the 18-point win by outscoring Elyria 13-6 in the fourth quarter.
“The game didn’t have great flow in the first half,” coach Kelly Robson said. “Elyria was playing a box and one on Kourtney. We anticipated it, and I thought we attacked it OK, but it’s different than things we commonly see in our league. They have two tall players on the back of the box, so even though we got it inside anytime we wanted, they were there to defend (or) block our shots.
“We were ahead after the first quarter and stretched our lead for the rest of the game. We were probably more aggressive in the second half, which is why we pulled away some.”
Richmond led all scorers with 14 points. Hansen scored 11 points and had eight assists.
Inman—A strong start set the tone for Marion in a 40-37 victory over Inman Tuesday.
Four of Marion’s first five baskets were 3-pointers, the first two by Kourtney Hansen and the second two by Sam Richmond. When Richmond made her second trey at the 2:55 mark, Marion led 16-5 and propelled the Warriors to a 19-7 lead at the first break.
“I was super excited for the way they got started,” coach Kelly Robson said. “Because sometimes this year, we haven’t really started that well.”
The Warriors cooled in the second quarter, going nearly the entire quarter without a field goal. Hansen made the Warriors’ only basket with 8 seconds left in the half, and that, combined with three free-throws, brought the halftime score to 24-15 Marion.
“When they went to the zone, we really just started to stand around,” Robson said. “Not that we need to move a lot, but we need to move out away from the defense a little bit.”
The Warriors extended their lead to double figures within the first two minutes of the third quarter, and, despite a stretch of seven consecutive misses, maintained a 34-24 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Inman closed the gap in the final period when Marion attempted just three field goals, missing them all, and scored just six points at the charity stripe.
When the Teutons drew within 37-35 with 1:16 to play, Hansen made two free-throws, followed by one of two charity shots by Corin Parmley, making it 40-35 with 30 seconds left. Inman made one final basket at the buzzer to bring it to the final, three-point spread.
“I know I’ve got girls who can handle that kind of pressure when it’s time to do that, but (Inman) did a good job of closing it down,” Robson said. “We just turned it over a little bit more in the second half.”
Hansen led all scorers with 18 points.
Coming—Marion (7-1, 15-4) was scheduled to conclude the regular season by hosting Berean Academy Tuesday.
Marion will compete in the Class 2A sub-state hosted by Hillsboro next week. Teams in the field in addition to the Warriors and the host school are Canton-Galva, Berean Academy, Goessel, Herington, Inman and Moundridge.
“I think our substate will be very competitive,” Robson said. “There are several teams in it with a legitimate shot to win it. For us to be successful, we will need to continue to keep our turnovers down.”