Dexter Girls Rally Past Saline in SEC Red Showdown

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The showdown between SEC Red co-leaders Dexter and Saline was expected to be a battle and it was just that as Dexter rallied from 10 points down to knock off undefeated Saline 43-39 Tuesday night.

Both teams entered play tied for the top spot in the Red with 5-0 records. Dexter was 8-2 overall and Saline 10-0 and ranked in the top ten in D1.

The teams went back and forth in the opening quarter with no player scoring more than one basket and the Dreadnaughts took 10-8 lead after one.

A Chloe Perry triple put Dexter up 15-12 with four minutes left in the half, but it would be the last points the Dreads would score in the second.

Saline went on a 10-0 run to close the half with Kate Stemmer scoring four and Kadyn Maida nailing a triple in the final seconds to give the Hornets a 22-15 at the break.

Alena Blumberg scored to open the second half and Sydney Pnacek followed with a triple to cut the Saline lead to two 22-20, but the Hornets answered with triples by Taylor Kangas and Sophie Canen and four points by Stemmer to push the Saline lead to ten 32-22.

Dexter responded with a rebound putback by Heidi Fuchs and a long triple at the buzzer by Pnacek to cut the Hornet lead to 32-27 after three.

Pnacek scored on a rebound putback and three-pointer to tie the game at 32. She scored the first seven points of the fourth quarter for Dexter as the Dreadnaughts battled back to tie the game at 32.

Maida drove the lane for two to stop the Dexter 10-0 run and put Saline back up 34-32, but Pnacek scored her ninth straight point for Dexter with a jumper to tie it back up at 34.

Canen put Saline back up with a triple to make it 37-34 Hornets.

Brianna Rodriguez made a pair of free throws for Dexter to cut the lead to 37-36, but Canen answered with two free throws to make it 39-36 with 1:18 left.

Pnacek split a pair to make it 39-37. Saline had a chance to extend the lead but missed the front end of a one and one and Rodriguez nailed a triple from the corner to put Dexter up 40-39 with 38.4 left.

The Dexter defense forced a jump ball to give possession to the Dreadnaughts.

Rodriguez split a pair to make it 41-39 with 4.8 left. Saline called timeout and with one last chance they turned the ball over with an over and back call.

Saline fouled Rodriguez with one second left and she calmly sank both free throws to seal the win for the Dreadnaughts.

Pnacek finished with a team-high 18 points and seven rebounds for Dexter, including nine straight to end the third and start the fourth when the Dreads rallied from 10 down.

Rodriguez finished with 13 points, including the last six of the game to seal the win for Dexter. Blumberg and Perry finished with four each, and Maddi Valentine and Fuchs two each.

Canen led Saline with 16 points and six rebounds.

Stemmer added nine points and 10 rebounds, while Maida chipped in with seven points. Ella Dean added four points, Kangas three points, Anna Hesse 10 rebounds, and three blocks, and Beth Ann Ford seven rebounds.

The teams will meet up one more time in Saline February 22 in the league season finale. The win moved Dexter to 6-0 in the SEC Red while Saline dropped to 5-1 in the SEC Red.

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