John Marshall Girls Run Past Preston

Monarchs start slow, then roll

Photo by Kyle Lutz John Marshall sophomore Abby Blake brings the ball up the court Monday night in Moundsville during a 63-50 victory against Preston.

MOUNDSVILLE — Sometimes when one is thrown off a routine that they have been doing a period of time, it takes a little bit to get back into the swing of things. John Marshall girls ‘coach Brock Melko feared that of his team during Monday night’s game against Preston.

However, after a slow first quarter, the Monarchs were able to find their game and come out with a solid 63-50 victory over the Knights at the John Marshall Fieldhouse.

“We were dealt a tough hand not being in school (Monday),” Melko said. “The older I get, the more I believe in that if you break your routine, it’s tough. I was worried about this game for that reason because they (Preston) were in school. They had their normal routine I’m sure and I tried to not let them, but I’m sure we laid around on the couch all day, slept in until noon. I think that explains our six-point first quarter. But once we woke up and started playing, I was pretty proud of the effort.”

The Monarchs scored nine of the first 11 points of the second quarter to tie the game at 15-15 with 6:03 left. Preston’s Kylie Felton put the Knights back on top with a basket.

However, 30 seconds later, Shay Straughn hit her first 3-pointer give the Monarchs the lead for good as the score read 18-17. The long-range shot gave John Marshall a confidence boost as it tallied 12 of the next 15 points and took a commanding 30-20 lead with 32 seconds left in the frame.

While the Monarchs scored 24 points in the quarter, it still was a transition quarter,

“The ball wasn’t going into the basket,” Melko said. “Part of it was in the beginning we were settling. We knew they were going to play that zone and try to slow the game down.

“In the first couple of minutes we let them. We just stood with them and were jacking the first open shot that was there. I think about our third or fourth air ball, we started to realize maybe we got to drive it to the basket and get to the line which Avery (Derrow) and Shay both did a good job.”

Derrow led the way for the Monarchs as she compiled a game-high 24 points while Straughn netted 22 to go along with four 3-pointers. The Monarchs also got some solid minutes out of their role players as Ivy Henderson had seven points. Anna and Abby Blake netted four and made the defensive plays needed.

“I can’t say enough good things about them,” Melko said about the twins. “There are games … Union Local comes to mind where I don’t think Abby scored, she might of have two points and she impacted the game as much as one player can impact the game with her defense.

“We had her on (Makenzie) Freind (Monday), who we knew was a pretty prolific scorer. When we took her and our starters out, she (Freind) had four points. She does that. We usually put her on the other team’s best player. She pushes the tempo, takes care of the ball … Her defense is invaluable. Anna, the same thing. Plays her butt off and has been coming around as a scorer too. She gave us a couple of big baskets and a couple of steals.”

John Marshall came out hot in the second half as it scored the first eight points of the third quarter and led by as many as 22 in the fourth.

Three Preston players scored in double figures as Kirsten Brown had a team-high 16 points while Freind and Taylor Mayne contributed with 10 each.

Tyler Consolidated 58, Doddridge County 41

MIDDLEBOURNE — JoLee Walton secured a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds as Tyler Consolidated defeated Doddridge County. Josey Jones netted a game-high 17 points for the Silver Knights while also grabbing eight boards and had four steals. Peyton Kocher rounded out the double-digit scorers as she contributed with 10 points.

St. John 56, East Richland Christian 29

BELLAIRE — St. John buried 10 treys en route to a win over East Richland Christian. Brooke Palmer netted seven three-point goals en route to a 21-point effort while junior standout Kaylin Nixon buried three treys while finishing with 19 points. Nixon also grabbed 14 rebounds.

Katie Hans led the Lions with 13 points while Ally Stewart added 10.

Union Local 61, Martins Ferry 52

MARTINS FERRY — Haley Porter had a game-high 25 points as Union Local secured a victory over Martins Ferry. Emily Loase was also solid for the Jets as she netted 17 points while Hannah Porter compiled 13.

For the Purple Riders, Madison Ging and Jaden Stalder each scored 10 points.

Brooke 44, Steubenville 36

STEUBENVILLE — Ashley Arca led the way for Brooke with 17 points in a victory over Steubenville. Hope Bowman poured in 14 points for the Bruins,

Seana Ragusa and Makayla Abram paced Big Red with eight points each.