By Tim Linscott
The Perkins County girls basketball team was narrowly defeated by Wray, Colo., in the home opener on Dec. 6 at home, 49-45.
The Lady Plainsmen found themselves in a deep hole after one period, down 19-9 to the Eagles, but did not give up. A 16-4 second quarter put PCS down 35-13 at the half but Lady Plainsmen head coach Deanne Bishop knew that her team would not go away quietly.
“Although we got off to a slow start, I was impressed with the defensive adjustments our team was able to make at halftime, and those changes really seemed to make things difficult for Wray,” Bishop said.
The team began limiting drives to the lane by Wray players, shutting down their opportunity for easy shots. PCS outscored Wray 20-4 in the third quarter to give the Eagles a 39-33 lead going into the fourth quarter. PCS outscored Wray 12-10 in the final quarter to mount a comeback but were unable to pull it off fully.
“It was great to see our girls come out in that second half and fight their way back into the game. This says a lot about their resolve to work hard in all circumstances,” Bishop said, adding, however, that the missed 14 free throws (5 of 19 for the game) could have been the difference in the game. “So while the coaching staff was pleased with the girls’ comeback, we still have areas that need improvement.”
The Lady Plainsmen shot 37 percent from behind the three-point line in the comeback, hitting 6 of 16.
Mariah Curtis lit up the Eagle defense for 17 points for PCS, hitting three three-pointers with two rebounds, two assists, four steals and a block.
Kendra Hoffert had 13 points, nine boards, hit 3 of 6 three-point shots and added two assists.
Courtney McClenahan pulled down 11 rebounds with two steals while Courtney Lyon had eight boards, two assists and a steal. Courtney Ostermiller led the team in assists with three and had six rebounds and a steal.
PCS vs. Hershey
The team struggled on offense against Hershey, dropping to 0-2 as the Panthers defeated the Lady Plainsmen 60-15.
“Hershey is a well-coached, disciplined squad. We struggled to get off shots against Hershey’s pressure and didn’t hit a high percentage of those shots,” Bishop said. “On the flip-side, Hershey shot very well from the floor and had a balanced, offensive attack.”
Bishop said the game was a good early-season measuring stick for the team and pointed out some areas to work on in practice.
Both teams seemed to start out a bit slow as the Panthers led 11-4 after one period. Hershey was able to blow the game open with a 20-4 second quarter that established their lead for good. Down 31-8, PCS tried to ignite a fire in the second half, but was outscored 29-7.
Ball handling was a problem for PCS with 26 turnovers and Hershey had 15 steals against the Lady Plainsmen.
McClenahan led the team in scoring with six points and had one rebound. Ostermiller had three points and a team high four rebounds. Hoffert led the team in assists with two.