Penn, Marian fall in regional championships

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After big wins in the regional semis Saturday morning, both Penn and Marian saw their seasons come to an end in the regional championships Saturday evening.

In a battle of undefeated teams in the 4A Regional Championship, Penn falls to Crown Point 54-47 in overtime. The Kingsmen entered the game 25-0, while the Bulldogs boasted a perfect 27-0 record.

The game got off to a slow start, and was tied at 6 at the end of the 1st quarter. Penn got a couple shots to fall in the 2nd, and they went into the locker room leading 15-13 at the half.

The 3rd quarter though belonged to Crown Point. The Bulldogs came out of the break on fire, outscoring Penn 16-4 in the period, and headed to the 4th with a 10-point lead, 29-19.

The Kingsmen though refused to give up. Down 9 with 3:17 remaining, sophomore guard Trinity Clinton took over. She notched several crucial buckets to pull Penn back in it.

They trailed by 3, 41-38 with just 26 seconds left, when off a Crown Point missed free throw, Clinton hit junior sharpshooter Reganne Pate in the corner, who drained a three-pointer to tie the game and force overtime.

From there though, Penn ran out of gas. They were outscored 13-6 in the extra period, ultimately falling 54-47 to Crown Point in the regional championship.

Even with the loss, Penn coach Kristi Ulrich was proud of her squad.

:Extremely proud of my team," Ulrich said. "These girls...you can look at this loss, but what they did this season to go undefeated in the regular season and then still make a deep run to the Elite Eight in the tournament is fantastic. Obviously we came up a little bit short here in the regional championship, but overall we have a lot to be very proud of."

The Kingsmen finish the season 25-1.

Marian meanwhile ran into a buzzsaw in Northwestern. the #2 ranked team in the state in 3A, with two D-I commits in Madison Layden (Purdue) and Kendall Bostic (Michigan State).

Northwestern felled the Knights, 47-29. It was still the best season in program history for Marian. Never before had they made it to the regional title game, and after beating Knox in the regional semis Saturday morning, they set a school record for wins in a season with 22.

Knights coach Steve Scott said he was thrilled with his girls' effort during the game, and all season.

"I'm real proud of the girls," Scott said. "We fought the entire game. They got two kids that could play for anybody and you know what, we battled and we pushed them and we just didn't have enough juice to overcome them."

"I will remember this team and this group of seniors as the one that kind of got us over the hump," Scott added. "We had a group last year that got us over the hump, and they got us a little bit farther this year, and we want to build on this from here on out."

Marian finishes the season 22-4, winning back-to-back sectional titles.