Energized Prairie girls roll past Linn-Mar, 63-27

MARION — Josh Bentley was asked if he was more pleased with his offense or defense Friday night. The Cedar Rapids Prairie girls’ basketball coach easily could have picked either.

Yet he went an entirely different direction.

“I was happy with our energy,” Bentley said, following his team’s 63-27 win over Linn-Mar. “Overall the offense is usually steady, I just thought our energy was consistent tonight. We played four quarters, had good spring, good bounce on both offense and defense. I think that’s what I was focused on.”

Prairie (5-3) put up 21 points in the first quarter and continued to pour it on from there. The Hawks got 19 points from Sarah Schmitt, 16 from Mallory McDermott and 11 from Sid McCrea.

Then there was the defense.

A 2-3 zone didn’t allow Linn-Mar (2-7) to get anything inside. The Lions took 33 shots in this game, 20 from beyond the arc.

Only five went in, which actually was one more then they made from inside the 3-point line. Prairie doubled up Linn-Mar in rebounding, which is what you would expect with all of those Lions misses.

“It started with our defense,” McCrea said. “We had energy, we transitioned well and then got some consistency on offense.”

Prairie had lost three of four coming into this one, but those three losses were to the top-ranked team in Class 4A (Marion) and the top two-ranked teams in 5A (Iowa City High and Cedar Falls).

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“We’ve had a few tough losses the last few weeks against top teams,” Schmitt said. “We’ve just really been trying to bounce back after those losses. We played very good defense tonight, and that’s what we stressed early in the week in practice.”

AT LINN-MAR

C.R. PRAIRIE (63): Mallory McDermott 6-12 2-2 16, Rachael Kilpatrick 1-2 3-4 6, Makenna Moenk 0-4 1-2 1, Sarah Schmitt 6-13 4-5 19, Sid McCrea 3-4 2-4 11, Quinn Deahl 2-6 4-4 8, Jenna Leggat 1-1 0-1 1, Jakayla Foster 0-0 0-0 0, Anique Adams 0-0 0-0 0, Jocelynne DeLarm 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 19-44 16-22 63.

LINN-MAR (27): Ally Johnson 4-7 2-2 13, Keegan Krejca 0-1 2-2 2, Carly Printy 1-7 0-0 2, Macey Miller 2-8 0-0 6, Jamison Feldman 0-2 0-0 0, Kaitlyn Brunson 0-3 0-0 0, Skyler Presler 2-5 0-0 4, Samantha White 0-0 0-0 0, Olivia Hoskins 0-0 0-0 0, Anna Huggins 0-0 0-0 0, Sydney Von Lehmden 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 9-33 4-4 27.

Halftime — Prairie 35, Linn-Mar 16. 3-point goals — Prairie 9-22 (McDermott 2-5, Kilpatrick 1-2, Moenk 0-4, Schmitt 3-7, McCrea 3-4), Linn-Mar 5-20 (Johnson 3-5, Printy 0-5, Miller 2-5, Feldman 0-2, Brunson 0-2, Presler 0-1). Rebounds — Prairie 35 (Deahl 6), Linn-Mar 17 (Krejca 6). Total fouls — Prairie 7, Linn-Mar 14. Fouled out — None. Turnovers — Prairie 5, Linn-Mar 14.

l Comments: (319) 398-8259; jeff.johnson@thegazette.com

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