As it has done often this season, Republic used relentless full-court pressure to turn the tide, pulling away from a pesky Marshfield squad for a 64-54 victory. The Lady Tigers trailed early and never fully put the game away until the final two minutes, in a non-conference game that was much tougher than it had shaped up to be.
“We’ve got to do a lot of little things a little bit better — blocking out, taking care of the ball, that type of stuff — and improve on that…before we get real deep in conference,” says coach Kris Flood.
Marshfield and its 8-8 record would have seemed overmatched on paper against 11-0 Republic, ranked #2 in the state. But Marshfield forced several Republic turnovers in the early minutes and converted them to points to grab a 13-4 lead. Over the final four minutes of the 1st quarter, though, Republic forced multiple turnovers and outscored the Lady Jays to take a 19-16 lead.
(See photo gallery below.)
In the 2nd quarter, Marshfield stayed close, and even took a brief lead at 30-29. But Alice Heinzler drained consecutive three-pointers to give the Lady Tigers a 35-30 lead at halftime. Heinzler had 15 in the 1st half and finished with a team-high 19 for Republic.
In the 3rd quarter, it was a 3-pointer by Michayla Shanks around the four-minute mark that provided a key turning point, pushing a six-point lead out to nine for Republic. From there, the Lady Tigers ran the lead to 12, 50-38, heading into the final period.
The lead was as much as 14 points in the 4th quarter before Marshfield scrambled to get it down to single digits in the final two minutes.
Flood says despite running its record to 12-0, his team wasn’t satisfied with its performance after the game.
“Sometimes I walk in (the locker room) and feel like we just got beat,” he says. “We’ve just got to get back to playing…and trying to have some fun a little bit. We’re gonna get everybody’s best game. That’s just something we’ve got to get used to.”
In addition to Heinzler’s 19 points, Republic had 17 points from Sarah Kreul and 11 from Alex Botkin. Kayla Bartelsmeyer and Lindsey Carlson had six points each.
Marshfield’s Lauren Aldridge led all scorers with 25 points, including 10 in the 4th quarter.
Republic is 12-0, and back in action at home Thursday. Marshfield falls to 8-9. [smugmug url=”http://republictigersports.smugmug.com/hack/feed.mg?Type=gallery&Data=27562291_34grzx&format=rss200″ imagecount=”100″ start=”1″ num=”100″ thumbsize=”Th” link=”smugmug-lightbox” captions=”false” sort=”false” window=”true” smugmug=”true” size=”XL”]