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No. 1 Spartans declare dominance, route No. 4 Crater

The No. 1 Marist Spartans dominated the No. 4 Crater Comets from the tip, winning 47-21. (Photo courtesy of Zachary Neel).

EUGENE, Ore. - The Marist Spartans proved on Friday night why they are the No. 1 ranked team in the state, shooting past the No. 4 Crater Comets early and often in a 47-21 victory at home.

Kayley Elliott finished the game with nine points and seven rebounds for the Spartans (13-2, 5-0) after scoring eight in the first half, helping Marist go into the break with a 27-12 lead.

Emma McKenney also scored nine points for the Spartans, and Lauren Eagen finished with nine points despite playing only 13 minutes due to foul trouble.

The Spartans set the tempo for the game early, holding Crater to just five points in the first quarter, and 12 points in the half.

"Our kids are really starting to take some pride in their defense," said Marist coach Terry Harrison. "They've done that now for three or four games in a row, so that's the key."

Another five-point quarter from Crater coming out of the half allotted Marist some cushion, as it was admittedly a sub-par night for the Spartans offensively.

"We weren't totally efficient on offense at times because we just got in a hurry," said Harrison. "We just want to keep preaching defense. Even if our offense is ugly, we know our defense can sustain anything that we maybe don't do as well as we should."

The Spartans now sit far and away above the rest of the Midwestern League, and they currently hold a one-game lead over No. 2 ranked Central.

Up next, Marist will host Ashland next Friday.

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