Though both games resulted in double-digit outcomes, fans of both Pella Christian and Pella High likely all returned home enjoying Friday night’s first contest of the season between the crosstown rivals, as Pella Christian claimed a 59-39 win in the opener and the host Little Dutch notched a 76-64 triumph in the late game.
The Lady Dutch and Lady Eagles jockeyed back-and-forth for the lead through the first quarter, and Pella took a 23-21 lead midway through the second frame, but Pella Christian responded with a 9-1 run to close the period and never looked back. A 21-7 third quarter run broke the game wide open.
“I thought this was probably the best team effort that we’ve had all season yet,” said Pella Christian girls’ head coach Kevin Van Maanen. “Every player that came in had a role, and I thought it was a great team effort all night.”
That’s Lady Eagle’s head coach Kevin Van Maanen. Paige Engbers knocked down four three-pointers to account for most of her 14-points off the bench, while Jasmin Schelhaas put up 13 points and Tayler Stusma added 10. Though Pella High started strong, head coach Jerod Garland said the Lady Eagles’ defense limited what his team could do in the second half.
“We were happy with the first quarter, and then we got away from some things we wanted to do, [and] we didn’t follow some keys that we had,” said Garland. “Really, it boils down to just not taking good shots. I felt like our possessions in the second half were very rushed. Part of that’s on me. I probably had a timeout I could have called in there, but we didn’t hit a shot and we didn’t’ get it inside as much as we needed to, and that’s all a credit to PC’s [Pella Christian’s] defense.”
Regan Cooper had another sensational night for Pella High, tallying 19 points and 12 rebounds; while Madeline Meyer added 11. The Pella Christian girls have won nine straight games since losing the first game of the season and are in the driver’s seat in the league race at 5-0 in the Little Hawkeye Conference. They’ll host Western Christian today in non-conference play. Pella High, meanwhile, slips two games back to 4-2 in the conference and 6-4 overall. The Lady Dutch are off until Tuesday, when they host Chariton.