The Marion High School Warriors girls’ basketball team began its season with a 49-16 loss Friday at Southeast of Saline, but the final score doesn’t tell the whole story of how the Warriors played.
Marion’s offense committed few turnovers even in the face of pressure defense. Most trips down the court, the Warriors were able to get a shot attempt, although few of them were successful. On defense, Marion played with sound position but just couldn’t stop SES stars Erica Montgomery and Heather Cleveland from scoring. When SES did miss shots, the Warriors rebounded well and prevented second chances for the Trojans.
MHS was scoreless in the first quarter, as SES led 10-0 after eight minutes. The second quarter was the strongest for Marion. Megan Richmond put Marion on the board with a pair of free throws with 6:59 left in the second quarter. Kelli Hess scored the first field goal of the game for the Warriors with 4:40 left in the quarter. In the final four minutes of the quarter, Marion scored 10 points. Julia Hall completed an old-fashioned 3-point play, making the basket and a foul shot. Hess made four free throws, Erin Meierhoff scored a basket, and Richmond made a free throw. The score was 28-14 in the Trojans’ favor, as Cleveland made basket after basket, even when Kaelyn Thierolf was positioned directly between Cleveland and the basket.
Katey Ehrlich began the third quarter by making a pair of free throws and blocking a shot, all in the first minute of the quarter. But the final 15 minutes of the game belonged to SES. Marion wouldn’t score again as SES won, 49-16.
Head coach Kelly Robson said the second quarter went well for the Warriors because they were able to get a couple of the SES starters in foul trouble, but they couldn’t keep that up the rest of the game.
Robson said he couldn’t find fault with his team’s effort on defense or how the team moved the ball on offense. At both ends of the court, the Warriors got more than half of the so-called 50-50 balls by diving and scrapping for loose balls.
“I was very pleased with our effort,” Robson said. “I’m so proud of the girls.”
Hess led the team in scoring with 6 points. Richmond and Hall each had 3 points, and Meierhoff and Ehrlich each scored 2.
Marion played Peabody-Burns on Tuesday in the first round of the Marion Classic tournament. They lost the game, 31 to 25.
The Warriors play Remington at home on Friday. They will also play at home on Saturday against either Berean Academy, Belle Plaine, or Eureka.