STURGEON - With Miranda Brandt scoring early and often, the Chamois Lady Pirates were simply too much for the Marion County Lady Mustangs on Thursday night.
Brandt almost outscored Marion County by herself, dropping in 30 points, as the Lady Pirates topped the Lady Mustangs 59-33 at Sturgeon High School in a Class 1 sectional contest.
Brandt dropped in all of Chamois' first-quarter points, as the Lady Pirates led 10-7 after one period.
"She really stepped up tonight," Chamois coach Marty Gerloff said. "She had her mind set on a goal and she was going to accomplish it."
Marion County rallied to take an 11-10 lead before another Lady Pirate got into the act. But a three-point play by Alison Mehmert, a 3-pointer by Alyssa Bullock and a bucket by Brandt gave Chamois an 18-11 edge and they would never trail again.
Paige Nolte scored a bucket with :01 left before halftime to send the Lady Pirates into the locker room with a 25-17 edge.
The Lady Mustangs walked the lead down to six points twice in the early going of the third quarter, but would get no closer. A 3 by Bullock in the waning seconds of the frame put Chamois up 42-26 heading into the fourth. It was a notable shot for another reason, as it put Bullock over the 1,000-point plateau for her career.
"That was pretty special," Gerloff said.
Chamois led by as many as 24 points in the fourth quarter.
Mehmert joined Brandt in double figures by scoring 14 points.
"Mehmert stepped up in a big way for us," Gerloff said.
Devin Johnson paced Marion County (19-10) with 13 points.
The game was a measure of revenge for the Lady Pirates, who saw last season come to an end with an overtime loss to the Lady Mustangs in overtime in a Class 1 quarterfinal.
Chamois (21-7) moves on to play Norborne (25-2), a 48-38 winner against Meadville on Thursday, at 2:45 p.m. Saturday at Truman State University in Kirksville. The Lady Pirates will be bidding for their first trip to the Final Four.
"That's what we've got our eyes set on and that's the girls' goal," Gerloff said.