Railsplitters rally past MHS girls

DES MOINES — One minute away from its first win since the season-opener, the Marshalltown girls’ basketball team couldn’t close it out.

The Bobcats fell 54-49 on Tuesday night at Des Moines Lincoln, getting outscored 13-4 in the final 60 seconds of what was their 18th-straight loss instead.

Erica Johnson scored a career-high 17 points and Madi Finch added her career-best of 14 points, but post players Kassy Vest and Grace Metzger were fouled out by the time the host Railsplitters (6-14) made their comeback.

“They slowly chipped away and then Grace and Kassy fouled out,” said MHS head coach Stacy O’Hare. “Lincoln came out with tons of intensity in the second half and we did not, and we kind of fell back into our old panicking a bit.

“It was a good game as far as competing-wise, but we’re just disappointed. We’re not used to [trying to close out leads]. The best part was a lot more coaching opportunities for me — the girls learned a lot.”

Marshalltown (1-18) led 26-10 at halftime and 36-31 going into the fourth quarter. The Bobcats were clinging to a 45-41 lead with a minute left before the ball started bouncing Lincoln’s way.

Danielle Sheppard scored a game-high 21 points for the Railsplitters, who outscored MHS 23-13 in the fourth quarter. She went 4-for-4 at the free-throw line late in the game after O’Hare was whistled for a technical foul.

Hannah McKinney added 12 points and Amaya Fuller had 10 for Lincoln.

Vest pitched in eight points and a team-leading 11 rebounds before fouling out, while Finch added 10 boards in the heartbreaking loss. Alyvia Chadderdon and Kyra Feldman finished with four points apiece as the Bobcats scored more points they had since last year’s 66-50 loss to Lincoln.

“The girls played their best first half this year,” O’Hare said. “Lincoln made a big run off turnovers but the girls never quit and continued to battle.”

Monday’s originally scheduled contest against Aplington-Parkersburg has been canceled, so the Bobcats close out the regular season at home Friday night against Class 5A No. 3 Dowling Catholic. The Maroons won the first meeting, 86-22, on Jan. 12.

Des Moines Lincoln 54, Marshalltown 49

At Des Moines

MARSHALLTOWN (1-18) — Alyvia Chadderdon 2 0-0 4, Erica Johnson 1 15-18 17, Madi Finch 3 8-8 14, Kassy Vest 4 0-0 8, Grace Metzger 1 0-1 2, Kyra Feldman 2 0-0 4, Aida Almanza 0 0-0 0, Gabby Himes 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 13 23-27 49.

DM LINCOLN (6-14) — Amaya Fuller 4 1-2 10, Erika Canada 1 1-2 3, Isabelle Constable 0 0-0 0, Hannah McKinney 4 4-6 12, Danielle Sheppard 8 5-10 21, Kaylee Weaver 2 0-0 5, Bella Sanders 1 0-2 3, Mia Cooper 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 20 11-22 54.

MHS 6 20 10 13 — 49

DM LINCOLN 7 3 21 23 — 54

3-Point Goals–Lincoln 3 (Fuller, Weaver, Sanders). Total Fouls–MHS 22, Lincoln 23. Fouled Out–Vest, Metzger, Constable. Technical Fouls–MHS coach, Fuller.