|Lady Plainsmen open season with win|
By Pastor Vince Carrig
Point guard Mackenzie Hite’s two third quarter three pointers pulled the Lady Plainsmen away from Southwest and led them to a convincing 64-43 win over the Lady Roughriders Friday night in Grant.
Hite opened the second half’s scoring with a three pointer to give Perkins County a 33-25 lead and then struck again to stretch the lead to 47-30 in favor of the home team. The senior led the Lady Plainsmen with 14 points.
Teammates Jessi Day (10 points) and Brooke Poppe (seven points) joined Hite in ringing up two three pointers apiece.
Sophomore center Tanya Metcalf fed the basket with six shots, three in each half for the Plainsmen. Metcalf did most of her damage from in close, swishing jumpers, putting back offensive rebounds, and adding a second quarter free throw for a total of 13 points.
Southwest forward Allie McConville countered with eight of her 14 points in the first half, keeping the visiting Lady Roughriders just a couple of furlongs away at 17-14 after one quarter and 30-25 at the half.
But the Lady Plainsmen defense allowed no other Southwest scorer to reach double figures and overwhelmed the Lady Roughriders with a 19-9 third quarter, cruising to a 21-point victory.
Perkins County again flashed the form that won them a District 6 championship last year, pressing, trapping, and hustling.
In one sequence, senior guard Jenni Sis stole a ball and set up an easy score for Tanya Metcalf immediately after Metcalf had scored. Tanya Metcalf intercepted a pass on the next Southwest possession, and the Lady Plainsmen then set up Sis (six points) to knock down two free throws.
“I think the girls felt pretty confident of what we could do against them, that we could make them play a full court game,” Head Coach Chris Mestl said.
“We kept the full-court pressure on them; we figured it would wear on them. We also did a nice job converting the turnovers into points,” Coach Mestl said.
Three Lady Plainsmen reserves scored their first varsity points Friday night, with freshman forward Matisyn Humphrey cashing in on the first two free throws offered to her in the game’s first quarter. Humphrey sent another shot in, to match the output of sophomore Shalee Pollard.
Pollard put both shots in with her left hand, with one coming under heavy guard.
Shania Metcalf scored on a close-range shot as well, and set up Pollard’s second field goal with a very nice pass.
Southwest Lady Roughriders
14 11 9 9—43
Perkins County Lady Plainsmen 17 13 19 15—64
Perkins County vs. Hershey
The Lady Panthers increased their intensity to overcome a nine-point deficit with nine minutes to play and take a 46-36 win from Perkins County in Hershey Saturday afternoon.
Talented freshman forward Daynlee Miller put the game out of the Lady Plainsmen’s reach with an impressive cross-over dribble move that split two guards followed by a successful shot despite a hand in her face.
Miller led all scorers with 14 points; that final field goal put Hershey in front 42-34 with less than two minutes left.
The visiting Lady Plainsmen built their lead to nine points in the third quarter when Jenni Sis pinpointed a three-point shot from the left corner of the offensive zone. Sis added that to an earlier three pointer as well as a foul line jumper to register 10 points for the visitors.
“Overall, our girls found out that they are a good team that just has to [learn] to finish games,” Head Coach Chris Mestl said after the game.
“We felt like we missed some opportunities to extend our lead over 10 points, and maybe that we could have driven the ball and gotten to the foul line a little more. But we mostly kept them in front of us, made them shoot tough shots over us, and rebounded well. Anytime we can hold a team in the 40’s, we feel we have a chance to win,” Coach Mestl said.
Hershey guard Chelsey Nicolite scored on just two shots, but they could not have counted for more or come at a better time for the Lady Panthers. She offended Perkins County with two three pointers in the fourth quarter.
Lady Panthers forward Dana Elsasser increased her activity in the fourth quarter, getting to the line three times and fouling out Lady Plainsmen center Tanya Metcalf. Elsasser brought a physical brand of rebounding to the paint and kept several loose balls in Hershey’s possession in the final quarter.
The Lady Plainsmen had played a commendable game until surrendering a 19-4 fourth quarter. They hustled on defense, tied up rebounders, deflected passes away, and shot well on their way to a 32-23 lead.
Junior guard Jessica Day also drained a pair of three pointers for her Lady Plainsmen, and added four free throws to score 10 points. Fellow guard Brooke Poppe drove and ran to the basket for the close shots in tallying nine points.
The game’s first half looked like a true early-season game, with both teams committing turnovers and tying one another up to flip the possession arrow.
Hershey’s fourth quarter intensity rise not only served to score them more points, but also to deny the Lady Plainsmen open looks and lanes to drive.
The Lady Plainsmen did not take full advantage of the giveaways known as “free throws,” hitting at a 6-for-16 (37.5%) clip. The Lady Panthers not only shot a higher percentage (48%) from the line, but overall took more shots (11-for-23).
Perkins County Lady Plainsmen
10 12 10 4—36
Hershey Lady Panthers
8 9 10 19—46
Perkins County dropped to 1-1 for the young season and will tip off against two C1 opponents over the coming weekend: the 1-2 Kimball Lady Longhorns visit on Friday, and the Lady Swedes entertain on Saturday. Kimball beat Gering and narrowly lost to Sidney. Gothenburg has lost to Hershey by 12 and Lexington by 23 points.