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Messenger photo by Britt Kudla: Fort Dodge’s Meah McCaleb takes a shot at Urbandale at the Dodger gym Monday.

Scott Messerly was trying to find the right word for his Fort Dodge girls here on Monday night after a 45-36 loss to Urbandale.

“Perhaps a lack of urgency,” said Messerly. “I’m not really sure. We didn’t play very intensely. When we played a few set pieces they worked, but we just never got into a big rhythm.

“Credit Urbandale, because that 1-3-1 really gave us problems. We don’t see it often and it’s difficult to simulate in practice, especially at the length they are.”

The Dodgers (10-7 overall) made 29 turnovers, including 16 in the first half when the J-Hawks (5-14) took an early lead and never looked back.

Devon Carlile led Urbandale by 13 points, sinking three 3-pointers in the first quarter. She also had four of the 17 steals for the J-Hawks while Taylor Mulligan added 12 points and five steals.

Fort Dodge was led by LJ Maehl as the freshman scored 12 points. Lainey Maehl added eight points and four rebounds while Paytene Hiveley had four points, seven boards and two steals.

“I thought Urbandale did a really good job of bumping our bigs.” said Messerly. “It just gave us problems and we never adjusted. They’re a very physical side and they made it difficult for us to get the ball where we wanted it.

“It was just one of those nights where nothing seemed to work very well.”

The J-Hawks have played one of the toughest game schedules in Class 5A, with recent games against Waukee, No. 8 Southeast Polk, seventh-ranked West Des Moines Valley and defending No. 2 champion Johnston on the recap.

Carlile and Mulligan scored all of Urbandale’s 15 points in the first eight minutes as they went off the floor in a combined 6-for-9. Fort Dodge was only 2 of 6 in the first quarter and 7 of 17 in the first half.

The Dodgers were able to reduce the deficit from seven to three with fewer than five in the third, but didn’t come close.

“I thought we got some good minutes off the bench again from Ashlyn (Wills) and Morgan (Bodholdt).” said Messerly. “It feels like we could always expect that from these two.”

Fort Dodge travels to 15th place Des Moines North on Tuesday before returning home to take on Marshalltown on Friday.


Fort Dodge – Mackenzie McIlrath 0-3 0-0 0, LJ Maehl 5-10 1-2 12, Meah McCaleb 3-7 0-0 7, Paytene Hiveley 2-3 0-0 4, Lainey Maehl 4-8 0- 0-8, Ashlyn Wills 0-1 0-0 0, Morgan Bodholdt 1-2 0-0 3, Edyn Witham 0-0 0-0 0. Overall: 14-33 1-2 36.

Urbandale – Devon Carlile 4-11 1-1 13, Taylor Mulligan 4-4 4-5 12, Maria Long 1-4 0-0 2, Dharma Woodruff 1-4 2-2 4, Bri Tigges 2-7 1-2 5, Ela Tabakovic 1-4 2-4 4, Maddy Stutler 1-4 0-0 3, Delaney Peterson 0-0 0-0 0, Lauren Salmon 1-4 2-2 4, Alexandra King 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 15-42 12-16 45.

Quarter Scores: Urbandale led 15-7, 24-19, 38-27. Three-Point Goals: Fort Dodge 3-11 (McIlrath 0-1, LJ Maehl 1-5, McCaleb 1-2, La. Maehl 0-2, Bodholdt 1-1), Urbandale 5-10 (Carlile 4-7 , Stutler 1-2). Total Rebounds: Fort Dodge 22, Urbandale 26. Steals: Fort Dodge 13, Urbandale 17. Blocked Shots: Fort Dodge 2, Urbandale 0. Team Fouls: Fort Dodge 16, Urbandale 15. Turnovers: Fort Dodge 29, Urbandale 21.

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