Girls' basketball: Molalla stomps Gladstone 40-23 at home Friday
Molalla's girls' basketball team got back on track after four losses in a row with a dominating 40-23 win over Gladstone in Tri-Valley play last Friday.
The Indians had hit a bit of a lull after winning three games in a row around the holidays when they lost four straight games to tough teams that are all still ranked in the top ten in the state. Despite that, they came together and grabbed a confidence win against the Gladiators last Friday at home to get them back on track as conference play heads into its second week.
"It felt amazing [to get the win], and I really believe the whole team knows what it takes now," Molalla senior Sierra Cox said. "We're really taking away the defensive game we played as a team."
That defensive effort showed all night as the Indians took a 10-4 lead at the end of the first quarter on scores from Cox, sophomore Maddy Lisac, and senior Alicia Schultz, while Gladstone seniors Grace Campbell and Shaye Pinner connected for the Glads.
Molalla was forced to substitute a few players after grabbing three quick fouls in the second quarter as Gladstone's Campbell hit one free throw to make the game 12-5 in Molalla's favor three minutes into the quarter. Campbell then grabbed a steal and connected on the fast break layup to make it a five-point game, but Cox answered with two fast break layups of her own within 30 seconds to put the Indians up 19-9 with a minute and a half left in the first half.
Junior Mattie Myers then made a statement with a buzzer-beating jumper to put Molalla up 21-10 at the half. "In order to get back on track, we knew we had to give it our all this game if we wanted a chance at league," Cox said. "Gladstone has always been a tough team to play, and you never know what a team will throw at you, so we all made sure we were ready for anything that was coming our way."
Molalla kept the momentum going in the second half as they outscored the Glads 19-13 to finish out with a 17-point win. Gladstone's 23 point performance was their lowest of the season.
"I am beyond proud of the whole team," Cox said. "As long as we keep playing like that, I believe we will go far."
With the win, the Indians move to 7-9 overall and 1-1 in Tri-Valley Conference play. They remain ranked in the top 20 as they've played a strong schedule, and Madras (13-2, 2-0 TVC) is the only 2-0 team in the league after beating Molalla and Estacada.
Up next for the Indians is a home matchup against Crook County (4-12, 0-2 TVC) on Tuesday at 7 p.m. followed by an away matchup at Estacada (4-11, 1-1 TVC) on Friday at 7 p.m.
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