CARROLLTON — For the second time in less than 24 hours, the Marquette Catholic Explorers pulled off another overtime victory in the Carrollton Tournament.
This time, it helped them win some hardware.
The Explorers beat the Quincy Notre Dame Raiders 52-51 in overtime in the consolation championship game of the 16-team tournament at Carrollton High School. Marquette improved to 13-10 and has clinched at least a .500 record with Saturday’s win.
“The girls have challenged me in every single game,” first-year Marquette coach Lee Green said. “They had the will not to quit and kept battling and it paid off for them.”
The Explorers advanced to the consolation championship game by beating Metro East Lutheran 59-48 in overtime in the consolation semifinals on Friday, making it the second time in 10 days Marquette defeated the Knights. The Explorers beat MELHS 55-48 on Jan. 17.
Lila Snider scored a team-high 14 points in Friday’s contest. On Saturday, she was the first Marquette player to receive the consolation trophy.
Senior Kelsey Blasingim led Marquette with a season-high 12 points, including the game-winning free throw with 10 seconds left in the overtime period.
“She’s a senior and she’s getting better every day,” Green said. “She doesn’t want her senior year to end. She continues to make it happen out there.”
The Explorers have two regular season games remaining before starting regional tournament play next week. Marquette plays Gibault on Monday and Litchfield on Thursday; both games are at home.
The Explorers will play Dupo in a first-round game of the Class 2A Althoff Regional on Feb. 6.
Blasingim said she’s thrilled her team clinched a .500 season on Saturday.
“It’s so much fun,” she said. “I love having coach Green as a coach and I love the other girls. I’m
going to miss them next year.”
Marquette made sure it didn’t lose in the consolation championship game for the second year in a row. A year ago, the Alton school lost to Granite City 61-49 in the consolation title game.
The Explorers finished 3-1 in this year’s tournament. The Explorers started tournament play on
Jan. 21 with a 57-24 loss to second-seeded Lebanon before coming back to win three straight
games over Routt Catholic, MELHS and Quincy Notre Dame.
“Our goal was to play Saturday to Saturday,” Green said. “We made it all the way here. You get two games for sure, but we got two free games in our schedule and we won them both.”
QND stormed to a 6-0 lead and led 9-5 after the first quarter. Marquette came back with a 16-3 run to take a 21-12 lead with 3:23 left in the second and took a 28-20 lead into halftime.
With the Explorers leading 46-43 in the closing seconds of the fourth quarter, Notre Dame’s Madison Meyer hit a 3-pointer with 35 seconds left to send the game to overtime.
Marquette trailed 51-46 with 1:42 left in overtime until it came back with a 6-0 run to pull off the win.
Blasingim hit two free throws with 1:55 left to cut the lead to 51-48. Taylor Aguirre nailed a 3-pointer with 1:08 to go to tie the game at 51-51.
With 10 seconds left, Blasingim was sent to the free throw line after being fouled by QND’s Beth Eversman. Blasingim made the first free throw to break the 51-51 tie, but she missed the second.
Sydney Hummert had a chance to win the game for the Raiders, but her shot was blocked by Lauren Fischer as time expired.
Fischer finished with nine points and 13 rebounds.
“She’s a warrior,” Green said. “She comes and plays 110 percent every day in practice.”
Aguirre, Peyton Kline and Madi Connors each scored nine points for the Explorers.
MARQUETTE 52, QUINCY NOTRE DAME 51
Explorers 5 23 8 10 6– 52
Raiders 9 11 17 9 5 – 51
Marquette – Taylor Aguirre 9, Lila Snider 5, Peyton Kline 9, Lauren Fischer 9, Madi
Connors 9, Kelsey Blasingim 12. 2FG-5 3FG-8 FT-18.
Quincy Notre Dame – Madison Meyer 16, Sydney Hummert 14, Molly Penn 13, Beth
Eversman 5, Kelley Meyer 4. 2FG-15 3FG-3 FT-12.