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MTZ girls basketball routs Monticello

Kallianna Becker attacks the Sages’ defender on the dribble in a 48-20 win against Monticello at home in Mt. Zion.

Staff Writer

The Mt. Zion Braves won their lone game of the week against Monticello 48-20. Denver Anderson scored a team-high 15 points, dished five assists and grabbed six rebounds.

In the first quarter, the Sages scored twice. Once at the beginning of the quarter and once at the end. The first basket of the game, Isa Beery made a mid-range jumpshot to give the Sages a 2-0 lead.

Anderson on the next possession found Bracie Barnes who nailed the shot to tie the game at 2-2. Barnes returned the favor two possessions later when Anderson scored off a Barnes’ assist to give the Braves a 4-2 lead and started a 18-point unanswered run for the Braves.

The Braves’ run ended when Maia High made a layup. Anderson then stepped up and nailed two free-throws to give her 10 first-quarter points and the Braves a 20-4 lead.

The second quarter ended with High making an assist to a cutting Megan Allen who made the layup and cut the Braves lead to 31-10 for the shortest deficit since the opening minutes.

In the third quarter, the Braves outscored the Sages 10-2. Inside of that run Anderson made back-to-back assists to Kallianna Becker who made her shots. Maddie Kendall and Kennedy Highley both scored three points inside of the run with Highley making a three-pointer at the buzzer.

“This probably sounds weird when you get a 28 point win, but I was a little disappointed,” Head coach Steve Marvel said. “After the first quarter, I thought that our intensity and our effort wasn’t as good as it was in the first quarter. We’ve been playing really well and I think that we got where we were focused more on ourselves instead of what was best for the team and I hink that carried out in the fact that our scoring dropped significantly in the quarters after that and defensively we were we were solid, but we can get into bad habits and games like this. Overall, when you get a 20 point win you can’t be completely unhappy and it puts us in a four game winning streak.”

The Braves improve to 6-4 overall and are 2-1 in Apollo Conference play. The Braves will face Maroa-Forsyth, Lincoln, Matton and Tolono Unity this week.

“We have a lot of games coming up and I don’t want to burn them out this weekend,” Coach Marvel said. “I want them to be fresh, I want them to be healthy. I always had a kid out sick today that would have helped a lot. We’re going to go hard tomorrow and we are going to focus on some things. I watched some game film on Maroa, so we’ll get prepared for them and then we’ll also prepare for Lincoln Tuesday. We’ve already started preparing for Lincoln and some practices with things that we have to do with our press break and offensively against them, against their zone defense and, and how we need to work some things. If we do that we give ourselves a chance to compete.”

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