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Lady Spartans too much for CCA to handle

SOLON– Josie Durr opened last Thursday’s varsity game between the Solon Lady Spartans and the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Clippers with a 3-point shot, and went on to lead Solon with 21 points in a 65-49 win.
The Clippers were coming off a 63-40 win Tuesday night on the road at Benton Community while Solon was regrouping from a 43-37 loss at Mount Vernon. However, the Creek Girls quickly found themselves in a hole they spent the rest of the game trying to dig out from.
Down 5-0, the Clippers’ Hanna Stokes, who led the team with 15 points, put up a field goal followed by the first of two 3-point shots from Hannah Mougin to tie the game. Solon took an 18-10 lead at the end of the first period thanks in part to Madi Shafer and Durr’s second 3-point shot.
A pair of back-to-back buckets by Ali Herdliska gave Solon a 23-12 lead in the second period while Stokes, Kiley Seelman, Lexi Kinnaird and Mougin tried to keep the Clipper effort alive. Seelman scored on a put-back while Mougin put in her second three-bomb. At the halftime break the Clippers still trailed by 10 points, down 38-28.
Seelman opened the second half for CCA with a field goal, but the Clippers’ ship continued to list ever closer to capsizing. Hannah Bluder fired a torpedo with a 3-point shot making it 43-33 in favor of Solon. The Spartans continued to blast away at the Clippers, taking a 50-35 lead before a Stokes two-point shot ended the period 50-39 for Solon.
Durr, Alex Henry and a three-bomb from Herdliska earned Solon a 57-40 lead and prompted Clipper coach Matt Haas to take a time-out in an attempt to right the ship. The Spartan onslaught continued however as Durr scored on a steal opening the lead to 20 points, 60-40.
Josie Durr led Solon with 21 points and a pair of 3-pointers. Ali Herdliska had 14 points including one 3-point shot, Nicole Oberthien had a seven-point night, Madi Shafer put in six points, Shelby Gunnells scored five points with a 3-pointer, Sydney Lawson scored four points, Hannah Bluder and Candice Kucera scored three points each while Alex Henry had a two-point night.
“We shot just over 45 percent against Clear Creek which makes a huge difference,” said Solon head coach Tony Nicol. “We kept our turnovers down and really played our best game of the year. We forced 24 turnovers and played with a lot of energy which made it a fun game.”
More fun than the Feb. 4 home loss against the Mount Vernon Mustangs.
The Lady Spartans were outscored in each of the first three quarters, and trailed 35-22 before a fourth quarter run.
“We acted like we were a bit scared of them instead of just respecting them,” Nicol said. “In the fourth quarter, it was like a switch went on and the level of aggressiveness went way up, leading to better shots.”
Solon closed the gap, but couldn’t avoid the loss in a 43-37 final.
Solon shot 28 percent from the field, although the girls were an efficient 40 percent from 3-point range, and shot 77 percent at the line.
Sydney Lawson led the team in scoring with seven points, while Madi Shafer hauled down eight rebounds.
Solon is home to face Maquoketa Wednesday, Feb. 19, in the first round of regional play. A win would send Solon to North Scott in Eldridge on Saturday, Feb. 22, with a regional final Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Central Clinton in DeWitt. All games have a 7 p.m. start time.