North rebuts Bobcat girls’ late surge

Erica Johnson

DES MOINES — In a game of runs, the Marshalltown girls’ basketball team’s surge gave it the lead only to see Des Moines North blow by them just before the finish line.

The Polar Bears outscored the Bobcats 12-4 over the final four minutes in a 42-38 victory over Marshalltown in Tuesday’s cross-CIML contest.

MHS (1-3) was down by as many as seven points in the third quarter before outscoring North 15-6 in the period to take the lead, 29-27, going into the final stanza. The Bobcats boosted their advantage 36-31 at the midway point of the period before the Polar Bears (1-4) pushed back, erasing their five-point deficit in a minute’s time before pulling away for their first win of the season.

“We had a five-point lead with four minutes remaining but couldn’t close out the game,” said MHS head coach Brian Murphy. “I was proud of the way we came out in the second half. We were down seven and came back to take the lead into the fourth quarter. Ultimately we have to get used to playing with a lead. We allowed a few mistakes to get in our head and lost the aggressiveness that got us a lead in the first place.”

Elizabeth Puot scored a team-leading 13 points for North, including a 3-pointer in the final quarter that powered the Polars’ comeback. Ihari Oromo added 12 points, Laphina Campbell finished with nine points and Nya Mach tallied the other eight for North.

Erica Johnson scored a season-high 17 points to pace Marshalltown. Madi Finch added eight points and four rebounds, Lily Roberts splashed two 3-pointers for six points, and Priscila Vergara finished with five points, five rebounds and three steals. Gabby Himes had team-highs of six rebounds and three blocked shots, and Avygail Smith chipped in a bucket for the Bobcats.

“We look like a different team when we’re attacking and looking to shoot,” Murphy said. “When we hesitate, we pass up quality shots and our entire body language shifts. As in each of our last three games, we had stretches of intensity but we have to learn to generate momentum when things don’t go our way.”

The Bobcats return home for a non-conference game on Thursday night against Newton, hosting the Cardinals in a girl/boy doubleheader starting at 6:15 p.m. at the Roundhouse.

Des Moines North 42, Marshalltown 38

At Des Moines

MHS (1-3) — Erica Johnson 6 4-6 17, Lily Roberts 2 0-0 6, Madi Finch 2 4-4 8, Priscila Vergara 1 2-2 5, Gabby Himes 0 0-3 0, Rachel Smith 0 0-0 0, Avygail Smith 1 0-0 2, Olivia Brintnall 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 12 10-15 38.

DM NORTH (1-4) — Laphine Campbell 2 3-4 9, Ihari Oromo 6 0-2 12, Elizabeth Puot 5 2-2 13, Anna Farlow 0 0-0 0, Nya Mach 3 0-0 8, Jaylia Benson 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 16 5-13 42.

MHS 7 7 15 9 — 38

DM NORTH 11 10 6 15 — 42

3-Point Goals–MHS 4 (Roberts 2, Johnson, Vergara), DMN 5 (Campbell 2, Mach 2, Puot). Total Fouls–MHS 14, DMN. Fouled Out–none.


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