By MICHAEL ALEXANDER, Staff Photographer | Published January 17, 2008
The Marist School girls went to St. Pius X High School’s gymnasium, Jan. 11, and came away with a 57-47 victory. For the first time in more than six years Marist has swept St. Pius in the regular season. Back on Dec. 8 they defeated St. Pius 40-25 on their home court.
Marist broke out on a 6-0 run, forcing St. Pius to call a timeout 1:33 into the game. St. Pius got on the board with 4:27 remaining in the first period, and they closed out the period down by only two points, 13-11. St. Pius took their first lead in the second period on a 3-pointer by senior guard Caitlin Raines. The teams swapped leads throughout the second period, but Marist took a 24-22 lead into halftime.
Marist came out attacking the basket in the second half. They stretched their lead to seven (29-22) after a 3-pointer by junior guard Dana Middleton. St. Pius pulled to within three with just over 5:30 in the third period, but that’s as close as they would get the rest of the night. By the end of the third period, Marist held a 45-36 lead. St. Pius tried to fight back in the closing minutes, but Marist was content to run the clock down and take high percentage shots, thus forcing St. Pius to foul. Marist junior guard Kristen Meier converted all four of her foul shots in the closing seconds of the game to seal the victory. Marist center Whitney Hagan led the team with 17 points and 8 rebounds. Meier also had 6 assists and forward Fraderica Miller had 5 steals. St. Pius was paced by senior forward Alaina Smith’s 18 points and 13 rebounds. With the loss, St. Pius falls to 12-4. Marist upped their record to 13-2.
Marist head coach Kim Hixon also responded by e-mail saying, “The win was a huge win because I think every time Marist and Pius play each other this year it has been a test of who can survive without their All-Americans, and who has stepped up to fill those roles. I think we have made major improvements in the guard area and our post play is excellent with that of Whitney Hagan.”
In the boys game, St. Pius broke out to a 3-0 lead, but once the teams settled down, Marist clung to an 18-14 lead at the end of the first period. Both teams kept it close in the second period. Marist only led by two, 30-28, at halftime. The third period was the breakout quarter for Marist. With 3:21 left in the third, Marist had extended their lead 40-30. Many of their points were transition baskets on steals or St. Pius turnovers. It was more of the same in the fourth period as the Marist players put more distance between their rivals and went on to a 66-43 victory. Junior shooting guard Jordan Brohm led St. Pius with 19 points. With the win Marist improves to 9-5. St. Pius fell to 2-14.