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Iowa girls basketball: G-LR advances to face No. 1

SIOUX CENTER — George-Little Rock used an entire game’s effort Friday in edging Class 1A’s 12th-ranked LeMars Gehlen Catholic in the second round of the Region 1 girls basketball tournament at Sioux Center High School.

With a 70-61 come-from-behind victory, the Mustangs pushed their record to 16-9 and afforded themselves a chance at the state’s top-ranked team — Newell-Fonda — Monday night at Cherokee in the regional final.

Fighting through a first half in which it was a little out of sorts, G-LR relaxed more throughout the second half, hitting big shots to take a two-point lead in the third quarter. It was a close game the entire way, George-Little Rock head coach Heather Grafing said.

“We feel like we benefit from playing in the Siouxland Conference to where we’re used to playing in close games,” she said. “We showed great composure to be able to hang on.”

G-LR senior Jessica Sandbulte scored 21 points, reined in eight rebounds and dished out five assists. Junior Teyha Graham scored 16 points, including three treys, while Maddy DeBeer posted 12 points and went a strong six of eight from the charity stripe.

Gehlen Catholic senior Hannah Sitzmann led her Jays with 17 points.

Newell-Fonda — also the Mustangs — is 21-2 on the season following a 74-28 drubbing of Graettinger-Terril-Ruthven-Ayrshire Friday at home.

G-LR 13 31 49 70

LGC 14 33 47 61