First quarter is all Lady Mavs need to earn big conference win Friday

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By Quint Turner

Coming into Friday night’s game, Meadowdale’s girls basketball team was sixth in the 3A Wesco conference, two games out of fifth, and having slim hopes for even a district berth. With the win tonight over Mountlake Terrace to mark the halfway point, the future looks a lot brighter for the Mavs, as they finally get their first two-game win streak of the year.

The Mavs started the first quarter firing on all cylinders before they coasted the rest of the way to a 48-33 win. The Hawks’ Maddy Kristjanson led all scorers with 15, but it wouldn’t be enough to keep them in the game.

The Mavs played a great first quarter. Their trap defense was awesome, as they forced eight Hawk turnovers. Katie Rickel hit a three to put the Mavs up 6-0 with 5:00 to go in the first. Meadowdale increased its lead to 19-0, going 4 for 7 in the first (and then subsequently, 1 for 15 the rest of the way). This really helped open up the scoring gap. The team would get someone to drive to the basket and then kick the ball out to Rickel, or Julianne Kossian for an open shot. Shaian Pagaling got the first two points for the Hawks with 1:10 to go in the quarter when she hit a shot from inside the key. Still, the Mavs finished the quarter up 19-2.

The second was still mostly Mavericks. Margreet Barhoum had a great drive from the three-point line for a tough two-handed lay-in to make it 21-2 early. But after the Mavs went up 25-4, the Hawks picked up their intensity. Mountlake Terrace broke into double-digit scoring when Samantha Romanowski got around a double team in the corner and then gave the ball to Kristjanson down low for two, making it 25-10 MHS. Late in the quarter, Pagaling did almost the same thing, except she didn’t pass the ball away as she scored a tough two in the paint to make it 29-12. The momentum was slowly shifting to the Hawks, but the Mavs still led 29-12 after the end of the quarter.

The Hawks fully awoke in the third, as they were getting second chance after second chance. The Mavs failed to score or grab many rebounds until Mackenzie Bretz sank two free throws to stop the 8-0 run. That put the Mavs up 31-16 with 4:20 to play in the quarter. Then, after a defensive stop, Sara Fjortoft mimicked what the Hawks were doing, and drove out of the corner and hit a reverse lay-up to make it 33-16.

But after Romanowski hit the first three for the Hawks in the game, they went on a 6-0 run to cut the deficit to 11. Kossian helped stave off the rally when she hit a three of her own to put the Mavs up 37-22 with a minute to play, where the score stayed heading into the fourth.

The Mavs started slow in the fourth, but they finally started playing like they did in the first quarter. They forced eight key turnovers, and stopped the Hawks on most possessions from scoring. Still, it was 37-26 when Kossian escaped the corner and got the ball down low to Fjortoft, who hit the bucket and the free throw after she was fouled. Pagaling tried to spark a comeback when she hit a wide open three to make it just a 40-31 lead with 3:30 to play, but Meadowdale finally closed game out, finishing with an 8-2 run to win 48-33.

With the win, the Mavs improved to 5-7 (4-4 in conference) and their next game is at home versus Glacier Peak next Wednesday  at 7:15 p.m.

Meadowdale scorers: Sara Fjortoft 7; Margreet Barhoum 11; Tianna Nugent 2; Katie Rickel 11; Julianne Kossian 6; Mackenzie Bretz 11

Mountlake Terrace scorers: Nikkie Froehlich 2; Amanda Dashiell 2; Samantha Romanowski 3; Shaian Pagaling 11; Maddy Kristjanson

Sports correspondent Quint Turner is a sophomore at Meadowdale High School.

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