Friday, January 4th, 2013
By Ryan Hines
Wildcats rally to beat Flyers
MARIA STEIN - Minster's girls basketball rallied from a 13-point deficit in the second half and survived an overtime session to snap Marion Local's six-game winning streak with a 52-49 triumph on Thursday night in Midwest Athletic Conference action at The Hangar in Maria Stein.
The Flyers (7-3, 1-2 MAC) looked well on their way to their seventh straight win after holding a 33-20 lead midway through the third quarter and with a 10-point advantage heading into the fourth quarter.
"I'm proud of the way that we were able to come back tonight against a very good Marion Local team," said Minster's head coach Nann Stechschulte. "We turned up the pressure defensively in the fourth quarter and turned them over a few times and we hit some big shots along the way."
Minster (7-4, 2-2 MAC) outscored Marion Local 19-9 in the fourth quarter to force overtime. The 19-point outburst in the fourth quarter came as a complete surprise after the Wildcats totaled just 26 points in the first three quarters of action.
"It makes me want to vomit," said Marion Local's head coach Treva Fortkamp when asked about the fourth quarter. "I thought we were a little impatient and I told the girls that Minster was never going to go away and they didn't. We didn't take care of the basketball and we were hurrying things when we didn't have to. I was disappointed in our man defense in the fourth quarter for not keeping the ball in front of us, but I have to credit Nann and Minster."
The Wildcats opened the fourth quarter with an 11-4 run to claw within three points at 40-37 with 3:42 remaining in the game.
Minster pulled to within one point at 41-40 after Claire Fischer buried a three-pointer at the 2:26 mark but Marion Local's Lexi Wilker and Megan Kuether combined to hit three-of-four at the free-throw line and the Flyers held a 44-40 lead with just under a minute left in the game.
After a pair of turnovers by both teams, Minster's Bridget Geiger swished a wide-open three-pointer from the wing to trim the Wildcats' deficit to 44-43 with 12.5 seconds left in the game.
Kuether hit one-of-two from the charity stripe with 9.5 seconds left on the clock to push Marion Local's lead to 45-43, but the two-point lead wasn't safe.
Minster's Kayla Richard had the ball at the top of the key and was standing on the three-point line when she launched a shot that banked off the glass and then off the front of the rim before falling through the net as the buzzer sounded to force overtime.
"She can do that all the time and I don't know why she doesn't do it more. It was a big shot, I just wish her foot wasn't on the line and it was a three-pointer that way we didn't have to play the overtime," said Stechschulte.
In overtime, Geiger hit two-of-four at the free-throw line to give Minster a 47-45 lead but Kuether tied the score for the Flyers with a coast-to-coast layup off a missed free throw by Geiger.
Geiger then hit a 10-foot turnaround jumper with 1:31 left in the game before Kuether used a great screen by Chelsea Winner and then drove to the hoop for a layup to knot the score at 49-49 with 36 seconds left on the clock.
Fortkamp screamed to her team all game long to force Minter's southpaw Logan Arnold to drive to the right, but Arnold used her strong hand to drive in the lane for a layup that put the Wildcats on top 51-49 with 25 seconds left in the game.
Chelsea Winner tried a turnaround jumper in the lane against a pair of Minster's defenders and her shot was off the mark and rebounded by Geiger with 5.4 seconds on the clock.
Geiger, who also had a game-high 12 rebounds, capped her 22-point night by hitting one-of-two at the charity stripe to put the Wildcats on top 52-49, but Marion Local still had over five seconds on the clock with a chance to force a second overtime.
Marion Local's Allie Thobe slipped past a Minster defender near midcourt and grabbed the inbounds pass before pulling up for a good look at a three-pointer on the wing, but her shot hit off the front of the rim and was rebounded by Minster as time expired.
"It certainly wasn't a work of art by any means but we are a blue-collar team that kept plugging away. I'm just proud of the way the girls battled back," said Steschschulte.
Brooke Winner and Chelsea Winner, who each scored 10 points for the Flyers, didn't score in the fourth quarter or overtime period.
"Those girls need to touch the ball every time down the floor, unless we are on a fastbreak, but they didn't score at all in the fourth quarter or overtime," said Fortkamp. "We didn't run our offense in the fourth quarter and I'm not sure what else to say about our play."
Kuether led the Flyers with 13 points.
Both teams are back in action on Saturday as Minster will host Celina while Marion Local will travel to face Anna.
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