CLARINDA — The Creston girls basketball team got out to an early lead and survived a buzzer-beater that would have tied the game in a 45-42 win over Clarinda here on Tuesday.
Creston led 14-7 at the end of the first quarter and 30-23 at the half in a game in which head coach Larry McNutt said the Panthers never trailed.
“We shot from the perimeter pretty well in the first half,” McNutt said. “We played pretty well in the first half. Third quarter we didn’t play as well. Got a little tentative and turned the ball over some. We missed some shots in the second half.”
The Panthers managed just four points in the third quarter, as the Cardinals climbed back into the game, trailing just 34-31 at the end of the quarter.
Clarinda cut that lead to one point with 7:00 left before the Panthers stretched the lead back to five points.
But, Creston missed several free throws down the stretch that could have sealed the game away, allowing Clarinda one final chance to tie the game and send it to overtime.
With just .7 seconds remaining, Clarinda’s Jenny Bair caught the ball going away from the basket and put up a desperation 3-pointer that bounced off the rim, giving the Panthers the win.
“It was a decent look,” McNutt said. “There was .7 seconds left, so we had everyone outside the lane. It would have counted.”
McNutt said his team’s play was inconsistent at times, but it was good to get a win even though the team could have played better.
“It was a good first half,” McNutt said. “We built ourselves a lead. It was just good to get a win. We didn’t play that well in the third quarter, and we still go the win. There’s been other games I thought we should have won — I thought we outplayed Red Oak on Friday, but we lost.”
Senior Brianna Maitlen led the Panthers with 11 points, seven of which came from the free throw line. Natalie Mostek added 10, while Chelcee Downing and Zaidy Frank scored nine and eight points, respectively.
Creston, now 6-15 overall and 3-10 in the Hawkeye 10 Conference, travels to Harlan on Friday.
CLARINDA (42) — Jenny Bair 14, Abby Brown 9, Ellie Shane 8, Paige Fast 4, Karyee Buch 3, Jadra Moses 3, Krista Rogers 1.
CRESTON (45) — Brianna Maitlen 11, Natalie Mostek 10, Chelcee Downing 9, Zaidy Frank 8, Brenna Baker 4, Emma Johnson 3. 3-point goals — 3 (Downing 2, Johnson 1).
Rebounds — Maitlen 8, Frank 8, Mostek 8, Downing 3, Johnson 2, Baker 1, Olivia Nielsen 1. Assists — Downing 2, Baker 2, Mostek 2, Frank 1, Maitlen 1, Johnson 1. Steals — Frank 3, Downing 2, Maitlen 2, Baker 2, Johnson 1.
Clarinda — 7 23 31 42
Creston — 14 30 34 45
The Creston girls JV team picked up a 46-38 win at Clarinda on Tuesday.
Good defense and good looks on offense carried the Panthers to the victory, improving the JV team to 12-8 for the season.
Taylor Briley led the team with 12 points, while Camryn Somers shot a perfect 10-of-10 from the free throw line.
Creston (46) — Taylor Briley 12, Camryn Somers 10, Jenna Taylor 6, Alli Thomsen 4, Gracie Russell 3, Brooke Thelen 3, Maria Mostek 2, Sadie Jones 2, Caitlin McIlravy 2, Olivia Nielsen 2. Free throws — 18-23. Rebounds — 31 (Somers 7, Nielsen 6, Jones 3, Briley 3, Taylor 3). Steals — 5 (Mostek 2). Assists — 10 (Mostek 2, McIlravy 2, Taylor 2). Team fouls — 15.
The freshmen girls lost to Clarinda 41-38 on Tuesday.
“We were off to a good start in the first quarter, then lazy defense got the best of us in the third quarter,” freshman coach Mallory Peterson said. “We gave up too many easy inside shots. They drove for layup after layup and we just let them.”
Caitlin McIlravy finished the game with eight points, eight rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Camryn Somers added eight points, while Taylor Briley pitched in seven. Alli Thomsen finished with six points and six assists. Sydney Dunphy grabbed seven rebounds.