A recipe of suffocating defense, even-handed scoring, and savvy spurred Marquette to a 55-33 win over Morgan Township in the IHSAA Sectional 49 championship tilt.
The victory launched the Lady Blazers into regional play for the fourth straight year and extended the club’s streak to 37 consecutive victories at the Scholl Center.
The first half was a collection of runs by both sides. Marquette led 6-1 before the Lady Cherokees hit back-to-back threes to nudge ahead 7-6. The Lady Blazers answered with an 11-0 surge to collect its first double-digit lead.
Sophia Nolan tossed in seven points in the first quarter. Dia Rallings contributed five as Marquette led 19-10 after eight minutes.
Morgan Township’s duo of Emmy Wells and Emma O’Brien kept it a tight ballgame. The pair combined to record five three-pointers in the first half. The two teams played to a 10-10 tie in the second quarter.
Nolan and Rallings shouldered the scoring load in the second. Both players had 12 at the break of a 31-22 contest.
Marquette gained separation in a third quarter where five players tallied points. Morgan Crook splashed a triple as she accounted for the first five points of the second half. Rallings landed her third trey of the night and the Lady Blazers took a 47-30 advantage into the final frame.
Armed with a comfortable lead, Marquette was content to run its offense and broaden possessions. Emma Nolan registered five points in the fourth quarter to finish with 11 points. She’s finished in double figures in every game this season.
Rallings led all scorers with 15 points. Sophia Nolan added 14. Between Rallings and Ally McConnell, the Lady Blazers received 17 points from their bench.
Marquette (23-2) marches on to next Saturday’s Caston Regional, where it’ll meet the winner of the Oregon-Davis Sectional at 10 am ET/9 am CT.