MISHAWAKA - Although it was not an ‘A’, the Plymouth girls basketball team still received high marks in an early season test Thursday night.
With four players in double figures and a parade of fourth-quarter free throws, fifth-ranked (Class 3A) Mishawaka Marian defeated the Lady Pilgrims, 67-55. The game was the season-opener for the Lady Knights, while Plymouth now stands at 2-1.
After a 20-2 run to end the first quarter and begin the second, Marian raced out to a 17-point lead (26-9). The gap reached its highest mark, 51-33, early in the fourth period, but Plymouth erupted for 26 points in the final eight minutes, cutting the lead to nine twice, the last time with 51 seconds to play after two Claire Tanner foul shots. Forced to foul though, the Lady Knights hit 14-of-17 from the charity stripe in the fourth quarter to hold on for the victory.
Tanner had a game-high 28 points, including six 3s. Reserve Tallulah Gault had an outstanding game off the bench, contributing 13 points (one 3). Freshman standout Nevaeh Foster scored 21 points (8-11 FTs) in her varsity debut for the Lady Knights. Senior post player Christina Himelick added 17, classmate Jaiden Rangel chipped in 14 (three 3s) and junior guard Mckenzie Hudgen tallied 11 (7-10 FTs).
A pair of Tanner treys and a Clare Sheedy free throw put PHS ahead 7-6, but sharp outside shooting by the home team led to an 11-0 run to close the first quarter.
Alaina Clady’s layup started the second stanza, but Marian reeled off the next nine points to take control. Gault scored five of her seven second-quarter points to spark a 7-0 Plymouth run and Mary Kate Flynn’s two free throws did cut the lead to 10 and the Lady Pilgrims were still in it at halftime, 31-19. Foster had eight points in the first quarter for Marian and Rangel the same amount in the second.
Two more 3s by Tanner and a Clady shot inside pulled PHS within 10 in the third period, but Marian finished with a pair of treys and a buzzer-beating layup for a comfortable 16-point lead entering the fourth.
Tanner nailed two more 3-pointers as part of her 14 fourth-quarter points and Gault added six in the final eight minutes while Marian was a frequent visitor to the foul line, scoring 14 of its 22 points from the stripe.
Plymouth travels to sectional foe Michigan City on Saturday.
•MISHAWAKA MARIAN 67, PLYMOUTH 55
PLYMOUTH: Claire Tanner 10 2-2 28, Lindsay Janus 0 0-1 0, Emma Cook 0 0-0 0, Mary Kate Flynn 0 3-6 3, Tallulah Gault 6 0-0 13, Kenzie Dejarnatt 0 0-0 0, Clare Sheedy 0 1-3 1, Alaina Clady 3 1-4 7, Sydni Weir 1 1-3 3. TOTALS: 20 8-19 55.
MARIAN: Meghan McCormick 0 0-0 0, Kendall Bethel 1 0-0 2, Nevaeh Foster 6 8-11 21, Mckenzie Hudgen 2 7-10 11, Jaiden Rangel 5 1-2 14, Payton Rangel 1 0-0 2, Christina Himelick 7 2-4 17. TOTALS: 22 18-27 67.
Score by quarters
Plymouth 7 19 29 55
Marian 17 31 45 67
3-pointers: Plymouth 7 (Tanner 6, Gault), Marian 5 (J. Rangel 3, Foster, Himelick). Fouls (fouled out): Plymouth 20 (Cook, Weir), Marian 16 (none)
Records: Plymouth 2-1, Marian 1-0
JV score: Plymouth 44, Marian 40