CHS boys' offensive diversity continues to be strength as Marshall tallies in double figures a third game in a row; Chillicothe girls fade after being tied at halftime
By PAUL STURM, C-T Sports Editor
MACON, Mo. — Results about as anticipated emerged from Tuesday’s Chillicothe High School basketball action at Macon.
The non-conference engagement produced a split of games with mid-teens final spreads, the Hornets concluding the night with a 62-46 triumph – their sixth in seven starts – and Macon’s Tigerettes pulling away from a halftime deadlock to prevail 58-43. Chillicothe’s girls dipped to 2-4 on the season.
Neither CHS varsity hoops squad has another game for a week when they have a home, non-league twinbill with Kirksville.
Both games at Macon were effectively decided by the start of the final quarter, the CHS boys having maintained their 13-points halftime advantage through the third frame and the Tigerettes having closed their quarter No. 3 on a 14-5 surge they would stretch to 19-5 in the first two minutes of the fourth stanza.
The Hornets, winning a third-straight for a second time this young season, scored their game’s first points on Westley Brandsgaard’s right baseline drive 41 seconds in and were never caught.
After Macon attempted to stabilize things with four points in a row to get within 11-9, Chillicothe netted nine unanswered tallies to go ahead by double digits.After Macon ended the skein with a deuce, four more CHS points in succession left the Hornets on top by twin figures for the duration.
Twice in the third segment, the gap grew to 18. After a Tigers spurt managed to draw its deficit down to 12 in the first minute of the final frame, the Hornets figuratively stepped on their throat with a 13-4 run that left them with their largest lead of the night, 60-39, with under 90 seconds remaining.
Statistically, Chillicothe continued to flex its scoring flexibility while still getting steady production from its most-consistent and dangerous offensive performer.
Senior forward Adler Marshall extended his recent emergence as a scorer with a team-high 14 points, his third-consecutive contest with at least twin figures. He also unofficially snagged six rebounds.
Meanwhile, sophomore Westley Brandsgaard, the Hornets’ top scorer for the season, tallied 11 and senior backup power forward Jonathan Burk popped in 10 points while, unofficially, snaring a team-best seven boards and blocking at least three first-half shots.
CHS senior point Jack Willard hinted at coming out of his early-season perimeter shooting slump by getting his forst two 3-point shots to fall – one noisily – for six points, while continuing to manage the offense well. He unofficially was credited with a team-best five assists out of the club total of 17. Five teammates unofficially had two “dimes” apiece.
Macon (2-5) had 14 points by Max Schroeder in its fourth-straight setback.
The girls’ game saw Chillicothe’s ballhandling shortcomings eventually short-circuit its scoring in the last 13-plus minutes.
The Lady Hornets had offset early giveaways against Macon’s game-long press with sticky-fingered defense of their own.
After needing handful of possessions to get their first shot attempt, the Chillicothe girls managed to erase a 5-0 deficit to lead by a point twice later in the first quarter, then took a pair of 2-points leads late in the first half.
Hunter Keithley’s deuce pushed CHS in front for the first time at 7-6 at the 2:37 mark of the opening quarter and consecutive Maggie Pfaff deuces in the final 40 seconds gave the Lady Hornets a chance to lead 11-10 after eight minutes. However, Alison Simons’ wide-open trey from the right corner beat the buzzer for a 13-11 Tigerettes advantage going to the second segment.
Macon twice edged four points ahead in the second quarter, but, with a turnover thorn in its own paws, saw Chillicothe come back to claim a 21-19 lead 2:18 before intermission when Harlie Jones found the range from long distance on the right wing.
After tbe hosts tied it, Keithley netted two charity tosses with 50 seconds remaining in the half for a 23-31 CHS lead that would prove to be its last.
Macon quickly countered with a tying deuce and the teams retired to their locker rooms square at 23 apiece, Chillicothe sparked by junior reserve forward Pfaff’s eight points.
The Tigerettes got two buckets from Bailey Cox in the first 75 seconds of the third stanza, only to see the Lady Hornets make consecutive steals that morphed into Jordan Hibner’s fast-break layup and two more Keithley foul shots. With just under 5-1/2 minutes to go in the third quarter, it was anybody’s game.
That changed within 2-1/2 minutes, though, as Macon tallied 11 of the next 13 points and then more than offset Keithley’s three-points play at the 2:35 mark of the third stanza with eight consecutive markers to seize a 46-32 margin with 6:15 left.
Chillicothe never was closer than 11 down the stretch as it seemed to lack energy, having been stressed by Macon’s three-quarters-court press all night.
Statistically, Macon’s 18 turnovers were no great shakes, but Chillicothe finished with 22, unofficially. After seeming to calm down against the press some in the second quarter, when it unofficially lost the ball only four times, CHS had a dozen in the last 16 minutes.
Scoring-wise, Keithley led all scorers by a wide margin with 22, but no other Lady Hornet joined her in double digits as Pfaff was shut out in the second half. Cox’s 12 – 10 coming after halftime – paced MHS with Megan Cashatt adding nine.