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Dorman, Mann combine for 43 to lead Eagles
Eagles claim No. 2 in 2A Black Forest
It was all Abby Dorman and Tori Mann, as Evangelical Christian Academy defeated a hot Peyton team 61-51 Friday.
Dorman and Mann put up a combined 43 points. Dorman combatted Peyton’s press defense with fast transitions and racked up 23 points, while assisting many of Mann’s points.
“We worked a lot in practice just preparing to handle that press because it really hurt us last time we played them,” Dorman said. “We just executed really well.”
The result of the game had huge playoff implications. It pushed host ECA (15-4, 8-1) into second in the 2A Black Forest League. The Panthers (16-2, 7-2) fell from first to fourth.
Though the final score had ECA on top, the first quarter was a tight contest. A 15-2 Peyton run in the second quarter and Shelby Patterson’s six points had the Eagles looking nervous. However, Dorman flipped on a switch with 1:30 left in the half, driving for a pair of layups and a key block on Patterson at the halftime buzzer.
In the third quarter, Dorman took over on offense, shredding Peyton’s full-court press with strong dribbling, composed passing and patient shooting.
ECA finally took the lead with 1:20 left in the third period after trailing by 14 points in the first quarter. Peyton stuck with ECA until late in the fourth, when ECA pulled away. Kayla Gaines helped create separation with seven of her eight points in the second half and a handful of key defensive plays, including taking a charge while the score was close in the third.
While Mann had 20 points, she dominated on defense with her long frame.
“It just helped to have my teammates encouraging me,” Mann said. “Even if we made a mistake on offense, we’d just get down (to our half of the court) and focus on playing defense.”
“Credit to them, they played great defense,” Peyton coach Tony Goodman said. “They stopped our dribble-drive to the basket, and they took our kick-outs away too.”
In the second half Peyton struggled to score, despite Victoria Goodman’s team-leading 13 points.
In the first round of the playoffs, Peyton will face Calhan and ECA will take on Kiowa.