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26-0 Run Propels Pella Christian Girls Past Newton, Boys Blow 18 Point Second Half Lead

Posted: Saturday, January 13th, 2018 at 5:58 am
Author: KNIA/KRLS Sports - Trevor Castle

The Pella Christian girls basketball team held Newton scoreless for a 13-minute stretch of last night’s 60-38 victory, while the Cardinal boys rallied from 18 down to beat the Eagles 66-61 in a doubleheader heard live on www.kniakrls.com.

Tied at 16 with two minutes to go in the first quarter, the Pella Christian girls scored 26 points before Newton dotted the scoreboard again with five minutes remaining in the third quarter.

Eagles coach Kevin Van Maanen said that his team did a lot of things right during that key stretch of the game.

“We were just kind of feeling them out for the first part, and then we got better defensively. We played more solid, not gambling, and making sure we were in proper positions and guarding well. A couple of times we let 14 (Marcelina Marvelli) get away from us, but we finally identified her and didn’t let her get threes off. Once we identified who their scorers were and played solid defense, I thought that really got our offense going and we started clicking.”

Morgan Fopma’s 20 points and 12 rebounds led the Eagles and Isabella Baugh added 13 points and nine boards. Pella Christian improves to 8-5 overall and finishes the first trip through the Little Hawkeye Conference at 3-4.

In the boys game, Pella Christian built a 38-23 halftime lead, and stretched the margin to 18 in the third quarter.

Garrett Sturtz, the state’s second leading scorer, tallied 30 of his 40 points in the second half, including 21 in the fourth quarter. The Cardinals used an 18-0 run to turn a 53-42 deficit into a 60-53 lead as the Eagles didn’t score until less than two minutes remained in the fourth.

Coach Larry Hessing’s Pella Christian squad turned the ball over 12 times in the decisive second half, many of which led to easy Newton buckets.

“They put that press on, and there’s no reason that we shouldn’t be able to handle that, but we didn’t. We didn’t attack the first few times, we were just willing to get it across half court and then they were able to reset their defense. They play good half-court defense, they picked up a few charging calls. When we did try to attack, they got a charging call and we turned the ball over a couple of times at the basket.”

Pella Christian committed 25 fouls on the night, and both Alex Huisman and Treven Cadwell fouled out of the game, leaving the Eagles shorthanded in the fourth quarter.

Jayden Huisman scored 14 points, and Jack Vermeer and Alex Huisman both chipped in 10. Pella Christian falls to 4-7 on the season and 2-5 in the LHC.

Both the girls and boys are in the big city today to take on Des Moines Christian. The girls varsity game is scheduled for 4:30 with the boys at 6:00.