Mia Warner

Pella's Mia Warner had 16 points and nine rebounds against Norwalk

PELLA — The Pella Lady Dutch tangled with long time Little Hawkeye Conference nemesis Norwalk Friday night on the home hardwood and they used a tough defensive effort in the first period to stymie the Warriors 52-42.

The Dutch unleashed a pressure defense that quickly took the Warriors out of their comfort zone. The pressure defense created turnovers which the Dutch turned into points with some crisp passing.

Pella created a 20-7 lead after the first eight minutes as the Warriors could not find many good looks at the basket. Tristian Gordon opened the scoring with a triple and then Mia Warner and Hailey Van Vark went to work on the inside. Warner had an inside bucket and an inside three-point play while Hailey Van Vark pounded home a pair of inside baskets. Eliza Van Zee and Aaliyah Riddick also connected on the inside and Kennedy Van Vark notched a pair of free throws and an inside basket.

The Warriors began to solve the Dutch pressure in the second stanza and outscored Pella 10-7 to cut the deficit to 27-17 at the halftime break. Warner put down six of the seven Dutch points in the period.

Pella extended the lead to 40-24 after three quarters as the Warner and Hailey Van Vark combination kept the pressure on the Warriors. Van Vark connected twice on the inside and Warner had a pair of free throws and a big triple to close the quarter.

The Warriors tried to mount a comeback in the final eight minutes, but four baskets by Hailey Van Vark and baskets by Kylie Tauke and Gordon kept Norwalk from getting any closer than the final ten-point margin.

“We got off to a fast start and then we had to continue to hold off Norwalk run the rest of the game,” Pella coach Blaine Forsythe said. “I was proud of the way our girls battled and responded each time. Norwalk did a great job on the defensive end and made it tough on our guards. We were able to take care of the basketball, respond to adversity and take advantage of our size in the post.”

Hailey Van Vark and Warner led the Dutch with 16 points each and Warner yanked down nine rebounds. Gordon was next in line with seven points and she dished out seven assists.

With the win, Pella moves to 11-3 overall and 6-2 in Little Hawkeye play. The Dutch travel to Grinnell Tuesday to tangle with the Tigers.

Pella scoring (FG FT-FTA Pts) – Tristian Gordon 3 0-0 7, Kylie Tauke 2 0-0 4, Aaliyah Riddick 1 1-1 3, Kennedy Van Vark 1 2-2 4, Mia Warner 6 3-3 16, Hailey Van Vark 8 0-0 16, Eliza Van Zee 1 0-0 2. Team 22 6-7 52. Three-point goals (2) – Gordon 1, M. Warner 1.

Pella rebounds (30) – Gordon 2, Ky Tauke 3, Riddick 3, K. Van Vark 6, M. Warner 9, H. Van Vark 4, Van Zee 3.

Pella steals (6) – Gordon 2, M. Warner 2, Abby Warner 1, K. Van Vark 1.

Pella assists (14) – Gordon 7, M. Warner 3, Ky Tauke 1, K. Van Vark 1, H. Van Vark 1, A. Warner 1.

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