Strong second half lifts CCA past Evart

LOOKING AHEAD: Crossroads' Katlin Reed (left) looks to dribble past Evart's Taylor McLachlan. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)
LOOKING AHEAD: Crossroads' Katlin Reed (left) looks to dribble past Evart's Taylor McLachlan. (Pioneer photo/John Raffel)

EVART -- Crossroads needed someone to take charge in the second half and Kaela Brooks was more than happy to do the job.

Brooks scored 18 points including 12 in the second half while Malory Carlson added 14 points to lead the Cougars to a 55-36 non-league girls basketball win over Evart on Monday night.

It was a season-high for Brooks in helping to cover for Carlson, who battled second-half foul trouble.

It was a matter of “stepping up, being a leader and when Malory Carlson got out, someone had to pick it up for her and we had to play together,” Brooks said.

Carlson drove for a basket and 25-20 lead early in the third quarter. She later picked up her fourth foul. The Wildcats weren't able to penetrate the Cougar defense and Carlson scored on a shot from the corner for a 29-20 advantage at 5:05.

Crossroads was able to stop Mara VanOrder and Evart from penetrating inside. Two free throws at 3:15 by Brooks gave the visitors a 33-22 lead. Two free throws by Aubrielle Angel gave her team a 37-24 lead at 1:35. Katlin Reed added two free throws moments later. It was 40-26 going into the fourth.

“I think we came out more mentally prepared,” Brooks said of her team’s third quarter. “We always have a weak first half. We’re working on that. We came out really strong (in the second half).”

“(Brooks) turned it around,” Crossroads coach JJ Eads said. “She kept an even keel, was able to finish on the basket, had a couple of jumpers and big steals down the stretch.”VanOrder scored for Evart to open the fourth quarter.

Larson and Brooks followed with quick baskets for Crossroads and a 44-28 lead. Brooks scored at 5:09 for a 48-28 advantage. Brooks scored four more points and it was 52-28 a minute later“I give the girls credit,” said Eads. “When Mallory Carlson got four fouls, our team played through it.”

Kristin Kullman hit a three and VanOrder scored inside for Evart to cut the lead to 54-34, but only 1:16 was left to play.

Carlson scored late in the second quarter for a 22-20 Crossroads halftime lead.

“I thought Evart played very well in that first half,” said Eads. “I think our intensity level was better in the third quarter. We started finishing some shots, too. We changed up our press a little bit and got easier looks that way.”Neither team could pull away with a sizable first-half lead. Kullman and Saige Nabozny both had threes in the first quarter to pace Evart to a 12-10 advantage. Reed had a triple for Crossroads.

The Cougars opened the second quarter with a 4-0 run.

Kullman led Evart with 16 points while Nabozny and VanOrder had eight apiece.

Crossroads improved to 8-1 while Evart fell to 3-6.Crossroads is at Fremont Providence Christian while Evart plays at Pine River Thursday.


Crossroads 10 12 18 15 -- 55

Evart 12 8 6 10 -- 36


Malory Carlson 6 2-2 14, Aubrielle Angell 1 5-7 7, Alyssa Larson 1 1-2 3, Hanna Meads 0 0

-0 2, Kaela Brooks 7 4-8 18, Katlin Reed 0(1) 4-5 7, Megan Soller 0 1-2 12, Kaitlyn Haner 1 0-0 2; Abigail Larson 0 1-2 1. Totals 17(1) 18-24 55.

EVART (3-6)

Kristin Kullman 4(2) 2-4 16, Tabitha Turley 0 1-3 1, Lydia Wetters 0 0-0 0, Mara VanOrder 3 2-4 8, Saige Nabozny 2 (1) 1-2 8,

1 1-4 3, Sydney Cleland 0 0-2 0, Totals 10(2) 7-19 36.REBOUNDS

Crossroads 37 (Mallory Carlson 11, Kaela Brooks 9).


Crossroads (Aubrielle Angell 7, Kaela Brooks 5).