Huskies crush East Fairmont, 70-26

·         by Chris Johnson Correspondent   CLARKSBURG EXPONENT/TELEGRAM

·         FEBRUARY 20, 2019Top of FormBottom of Form

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RACHEL — Class AA defending state champion North Marion’s postseason journey began with a convincing 70-26 victory against East Fairmont on Tuesday in the Region I, Section 2 semifinals.

It was a somewhat slow start for the Huskies, who were down 6-4 with roughly 2 minutes left in the first quarter. They used a 15-2 run to build a little momentum then put the game away by outscoring the Bees 26-1 in the third quarter. The win improves North Marion to 19-4. East Fairmont ends its season at 12-11.

“We weren’t getting any ball pressure on defense in the first half,” North Marion coach Mike Parrish said. “That’s not how we want to play. I thought we did a lot better job with that in the second half.”

Down by two, North Marion junior Taylor Buonamici came up with a steal and a layup to make it 6-all. With 1:35 left in the opening quarter, freshman post player Kaitlyn Carson gave the Huskies their first lead with an inside bucket that made it 8-6.

“Sometimes that’s the type of play that gets you going, gets everybody fired up,” Parrish said in regards to Buonamici’s steal and layup.

From that point it was all Huskies. Carson had another basket in the paint, Buonamici knocked down a 3-pointer and Cara Minor scored in the paint to make it 15-6 at the end of the first.

By the time Buonamici sank a pair of free throws with 1:00 left in the half, the Huskies had built a 33-15 lead.

The third quarter couldn’t have been much more dominant for North Marion. East Fairmont turned the ball over 10 times within the first 3 minutes and its only point came after a 1-of-2 trip to the line by Avery Pack at the 2:12 mark.

The Huskies meanwhile took full advantage of their amped up pressure defense. Hannah Shriver got things going with a layup. Buonamici followed with a layup and 3 on back-to-back possessions. Abbie Denham hit a 3 and a pull-up jumper, Carson had two more baskets and by the time Shriver scored on a baseline floater, North Marion was up 53-17 and well on its way to the sectional finals.

Buonamici led a balanced attack for the Huskies with 18 points and added six steals.

Carson had arguably her best outing of the season, finishing with 16 points and six rebounds.

“I’ve been waiting on that type performance from her,” Parrish said. “She did a great job finishing around the basket.”

Shriver added 10 points for the Huskies. Karlie Denham had a solid line off the bench with six points, five assists and five steals.

Tatum Oates scored eight points to lead East Fairmont. Somer Stover added six points with seven rebounds. Pack also pulled down seven rebounds.

The Huskies advance to face either Fairmont Senior or Weir for the sectional title on Friday.