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MTZ girls basketball defeats Sullivan

Jocelyn Turner goes up for a layup in a 52-37 win against Sullivan at Mt. Zion.

Staff Writer

The Mt. Zion girls basketball team won its only game of the week last week defeating Sullivan 52-37. Jocelyn Turner led the Braves with 23 points, six blocks and seven rebounds.

The Braves started ahead early when Denver Anderson found Turner inside for a layup. Maddie Kendall then made a steal and fired a pass to Turner for another layup. Anderson then made a bucket of her own to make the score 6-0.

Chloe Smith made two straight baskets that put Sullivan on the scoreboard and cut the lead to 6-4. Anderson then grabbed a defensive rebound and drove coast-to-coast and finished at the rim to give the Braves a 8-4 lead.

Alaina Moore made a mid-range jumper that cut the Braves’ lead to 8-6. The Braves went on a 7-0 run that started off an Anderson basket. Naomi Schmahl then found Anderson who made the three-point basket and Bracie Barnes made a hook-shot to give the Braves a 15-6 lead.

Sullivan got within two late in the second quarter Emily Miller found Mae Dawkins for a layup that made the score 20-18.

After that, the Braves went on another run that would give them control of the game. Anderson found Turner for a basket. The Braves went on to take a 26-18 lead and finished with the win.

“We had moments, I wasn’t pleased with the second quarter,” Head coach Steve Marvel said. We had a little bit of a slow start then we had a great response in the first quarter. Second quarter we weren’t good defensively. We let them score seven straight points to start the quarter and we got better in the second half with that. Our goal was to try to hold them single digits, uh, the second, third quarter each. I think we might have been close, but overall I was pleased. I know this is a huge game for Sullivan when they come, when we’re competing against each other. They’ve got some talented kids and it’s a game that we had to know they were super hype for and be prepared for that. We held it together good enough to get the win.”

The Braves finished their regular season with a 21-8 overall record and 7-4 Apollo conference record. The Braves will face Eisenhower on Tuesday in the regional semifinal and if they win will face the winner of MacArthur and Chatham-Glenwood in the regional final on Friday.

“Our defense has got to get better,”Coach Marvel said. “We, especially in that second quarter, we let the one kid score seven straight points. We got beat off multiple back cuts and we had that happen a few times even in the second half and we can’t get beat off bat cuts. We can’t play that lax of a defense against really good teams. In the regionals we’re gonna, we’re gonna face a, a very improved Eisenhower team and if we win we then are going to face either q Glenwood team that we had a battle with at their place earlier just a few weeks ago. Or we’re gonna face a MacArthur team that’s got an outstanding player and Christina Rice. So we have to be better defensive. That’s where, that’s where, if we’re good defensively, it’s gonna create opportunities for transition baskets for us in some run outs that we need to do.”

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