The Marysville Lady Bulldogs battled back after two brief leads by the Abilene Cowgirls to use a 20-0 run that wrapped the end of the first quarter and the beginning of the second period to put away the NCKL contest 50-32 Saturday afternoon in Abilene.
Originally scheduled for a contest in Maryville on Jan. 10, this make-up contest that moved to Abilene on Saturday quickly turned into a dominating win by the Lady Bulldogs.
Abilene senior Beth Holmes did her best to keep the Cowgirls in the contest as she gave Abilene both of its early one-point leads. After Marysville’s Linda Franco hit the back end of two free throws to open the game, Abi Lillard banked in a shot to give the Cowgirls a 2-1 lead. The Cowgirls were whistled three straight times and following another Marysville free throw and a jumper by senior Sami Bartels, Holmes buried Abilene’s first trey and they had a 5-4 lead at the 5:29 mark. Holmes made it 7-5 with her second bucket of the period. That was the last lead for her team.
“We had a better start to the game today,” Abilene head coach Mike Liby said. “They just came at us and pressured us and we couldn’t handle a bunch of the things they were doing. We had turnovers that we didn’t need.”
In the final two and one-half minutes of the opening period, Marysville ran off nine straight points to close out the opening period to go up 14-7. Junior Macy Roever began the run with back-to-back treys.
Marysville kept their foot on the gas and began the second period and after 11 unanswered points led 25-7 with two and half left to play in the half. Abilene couldn’t find the basket until junior Matigan Kobiskie came off the bench to bury a shot behind the arch. Kobiskie’s shot gave the Cowgirls a little bit of adrenaline and Holmes wrapped up the half with another jumper to take the game into half time at 12-29.
Lillard and senior guard Jade Vopat guided the Cowgirls offensively in the third period as Vopat got the Cowgirls on the board with a basket and Lillard drove to the basket twice with scores.
Bartels kept the scoring going for Maryville with a pair of jump shots and a trey as the Lady Bulldogs led 41-20 going into the fourth.
“They are very long and athletic,” Liby said in describing Marysville. “We had an issue with that today. We had trouble passing the ball and defending it. But, everyone is going to be long against us. Shots just didn’t fall today. It might have been different if that would have happened. But we have had that happen game after game and it’s getting old.”
Abilene shot eight of 27 from the field against the Bulldogs and only two of 12 from three-point range. Meanwhile, Marysville finished 11 of 31 and they made four of 15 behind the circle. The Bulldogs out rebounded the Cowgirls 39-21 and Abilene committed 22 turnovers.
The Cowgirls played hard to the last horn sound and they spent the better part of the final eight minutes at the free-throw line as they forced Bulldog substitutes to foul to try and stop Abilene from making a comeback.
Holmes, Lillard and sophomore Jenna Hayes had buckets and free throws to attack at the Marysville lead. Holmes ended with a team high 12 points while Lillard had eight and Hayes finished with six.
“Beth brings it every game,” coach Liby said. “She’s there consistently at both ends of the court. I don’t think anybody should complain about her effort.”
Bartels led all scorers with 19 while Rader had 11. Bartels recently returned to the team after missing several games due to injury. Marysville improved to 2-5 with the win and their first conference win against three losses. Abilene falls to 3-4 and they are 1-3 in the league.
Next up for the Cowgirls is the Salina Invitational Tournament where they will face Salina South Thursday evening at 6 p.m. at South High School.
Contact Ron Preston at email@example.com.
Marysville 50, Abilene 32
Marysville 14 15 12 9 – 50
Abilene 7 5 8 12 – 32
Marysville – Pieschel 3, Franco 5, Schaefer 2, Bartels 19, Roever 11, Ronnebaum 4, Dressman 6. Totals: 11 (4) 16-29 50.
Abilene – Holmes 12, Vopat 2, Lillard 8, Hayes 6, Liby 1, Kobiskie 3. Totals: 8 (2) 10-19 32.