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Morning Sun
  • Trojan girls dominate

  • It was a perfect storm for the Girard Trojan girls Thursday night in their game against the Parsons Vikings, especially in the first half as Girard led 50-14 at intermission on the strength of forcing 18 turnovers, as well as assisting 11 times on 18 made field goals and eight 3-point goals.

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  • It was a perfect storm for the Girard Trojan girls Thursday night in their game against the Parsons Vikings, especially in the first half as Girard led 50-14 at intermission on the strength of forcing 18 turnovers, as well as assisting 11 times on 18 made field goals and eight 3-point goals.
    “I felt like they did some things against us early on to try and take Hadyn (Herlocker) out of the game,” Girard head coach Brad Herlocker said. “I felt like Hadyn did a good job of finding the open person and those open people did a good job of knocking those open shots down. Then from there, we sent them reeling I felt like and I felt like we got out and ran the floor well against them. Then, they started to adjust back to not guarding Hadyn and she started knocking down her shots. All in all, just a very good shooting night, a very balanced night.”
    Girard scored the first eight points of the game, including six consecutive by tenacious on-ball defender and sparkplug Hope McLeod. McLeod played a doozy of a first half: 14 points, five assists and two rebounds.
    She was in the middle of most Parsons turnovers. Plus, she knocked down all four free throw attempts.
    “When you talk about heart, Hope McLeod has a ton of it,” Coach Herlocker said. “It’s really hard and it would be really hard for me as a player to play with Hope McLeod and not play my guts out because she comes with an intensity that you rarely see at the high school level and she brings it every night for us.”
    The combination of Hadyn Herlocker and Carly Heatherly delivered 12 3-point shots between them, finding holes and open looks on the young Parsons team. Herlocker scored a game-high 25 points behind seven 3-point shots and Heatherly added 17 on five 3s of her own. At the end of the third quarter, Girard led 68-23 en route to a 72-32 win at Ted R. Taylor Gymnasium.
    “When you play this well, you really don’t want a Christmas break,” Coach Herlocker said. “Even though it’s good to get rest and for the kids to see the family, when you play a complete game it would have been nice to just keep going. We were able to get in a full week of practice and when you do that, you can do more shooting drills. I felt like everyone shot the ball well tonight.”
    Senior forward Syvauna Mitchell led Parsons with eight points and 12 rebounds, freshman guard Shay Kelly had six points and sophomore forward Kenya Kelly finished with five points and seven rebounds. Parsons outrebounded Girard 32-26 but it was a 17-16 rebounding margin at halftime.
    “I can’t say enough about what Hannah Jones, Ashley Johnson and my other posts did tonight,” Coach Herlocker said. “Really outmanned and outsized and the big hearts showed tonight.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Girard (ranked No. 8 in the latest Class 4A poll) ends December with a 5-1 mark and the Trojans return to the court Jan. 4 at Chanute.
    Girard boys 41, Parsons 38
    After two consecutive losses by five points or less (Labette County 56-51, Liberal (Mo.) 64-61), Girard could ill afford to head into Christmas break with another close loss, this one at Ted R. Taylor Gymnasium.
    The Trojans did not make it easy on themselves with 19 turnovers (at least five in three of the four quarters) and being outrebounded 27-21. Never mind that Girard attempted its first foul shot of the game early in the second half.
    However, Girard made big shots down the stretch to hold on for a thrilling win. Girard scored 18 of its 41 points on 3s and made three long-range shots late. After the Vikings took a 32-31 lead on a 3 of their own, Devin Alters gave the home team the lead right back with a 3 and after Parsons regained a 35-34 lead on another 3, Girard answered with decisive 3s by Alters and Cody Grilz.
    Parsons had its chances late — sophomore guard Dequwan Wells picked up a loose ball and went in for a layup to get it to 41-40 with 12.8 seconds left but was called for traveling — no basket — and the Vikings found an open look for senior guard Craig Beachner at the buzzer but his game-tying 3 rimmed out.
    Alters led Girard with 15 points and Drew Davied added nine points and five rebounds. Grilz had seven points and big man Austin O’Dell added four points and five boards.
    Isiah Taylor paced the Vikings with 12 points and four rebounds. He kept Parsons alive late with a blocked shot on Trenton Stolte; Stolte, tight end on the Girard football team, broke free deep on a press release, Hunter Peak found Stolte and delivered a baseball pass, Taylor and a pair of Parsons defenders ran after Stolte and Taylor elevated to block Stolte at the rim and deny Girard two crucial points when every point was crucial.
    Beachner added 10 points for the Vikings.
    Girard evens its record at 3-3.

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