OTTUMWA - The Fort Madison girls basketball team continues to be one of the best stories in Bloodhound athletics over the past two years.
The girls are just one win - one point - away from a perfect season through six games including a 53-36 win over Ottumwa on the road Saturday night.
The Lady Hounds (5-1) struggled through the first half putting up just 18 points and allowed the Bulldogs to go on a 12-4 run in the middle of the second period to tie things at 16 with 2:33 left in the half.
Ottumwa would push the lead to 20-18 at halftime, but Fort Madison had the inside-out game plan working with senior post Brandy Walker putting in eight and junior guard Malarie Ross, who finished with a team-high 25 on the night, adding seven in the half.
Fort Madison would outscore Ottumwa 16-11 in the third quarter to take a 34-31 lead and then would snuff out any Bulldog rally by holding Ottumwa to just five points in the final period, with Ross putting putting up 18 and sophomore Camille Kruse adding six in the half.
Kruse finished with eight points on the night. Kylee Cashman had four, Delanee Seay scored two points and Irelynd Sargent added a free throw to round out the scoring. Molly Knipe and Kruse each had ten rebounds to lead Fort Madison.
BCMoore, a scoring database for Iowa high school basketball and football, has Fort Madison currently ranked 30th in the state out of 48 Class 4A teams, but has its offense ranked 21st and defense ranked 22nd. They should a strength of schedule at 43rd out of 48 teams.
Fort Madison remains unranked by the Iowa High School Girls Athletic Union as of Thursday.
Fort Madison hosts Washington (0-7) Tuesday night in the Hound Dome for the last game prior to the holiday break.
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