Lady Hornets hope to move up in league standings

The Lady Hornet's Kayla McKinney brings the ball down court against the Entiat Tigers. McKinney, a 5'5

The Lady Hornet’s Kayla McKinney brings the ball down court against the Entiat Tigers. McKinney, a 5’5″ junior places in the guard position and is one of the Hornet’s best ball handlers.

OROVILLE – The Lady Hornets faced Liberty Bell and Soap Lake last week, but were unable to come up with their a win.

Oroville took on the league-leading Liberty Bell Lions on the road Tuesday, Jan 27 and fell 27 to 53 in a game plagued by Hornet turnovers.

“Our problem was we just had too many turnovers… having 24 turnovers killed us,” said Coach Rick Mead. “And Liberty Bell just hit their shots.”

Mead said the Hornet girls had some good looks at the basket but were unable to drop the ball through the hoop.

Liberty Bell got off to an early lead, finishing the first quarter six points ahead of Oroville. By the end of the second quarter the Lady Lions had pushed their lead to 31 to Oroville’s nine.

Oroville came back after half time and added nine to their score, but Liberty Bell added 13 for a score after three quarters of 18 to 44. Oroville matched Liberty Bell shot for shot in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough to pull back from the deficit.

“And they have Shelby Scott… she makes all her Liberty Bell teammates better players,” said Mead.

Emily Graham and Jayden Smith each had seven points for the Hornets, followed by Rachel Peters and Chrissy Sadler with four apiece, Alex Egerton with three and Taylor

Sarmiento with two.

The Hornet girls faced Soap Lake on Friday, Jan. 30 and fell 35 to 42, although better free throw shooting could have turned the tables on the Lady Eagles.

Oroville was sent to the foul line 26 times, but was only able to put in 11 of their free attempts.

“We didn’t shoot very well from the line, if we would have made our free throws we would have won,” said Mead. “The Eagles had 17 of their 42 points from the free throw line.”

Mead wasn’t too pleased with the officiating and three of his Hornets fouled out, while the

Eagles had one girl get permanently sent to the bench for fouls.

The Hornets turned the ball over 22 times, with 15 turnovers occurring in the first half.

“We improved and kept the turnovers down in the second half of the game,” said Mead.

Oroville trailed the Eagles by five after the first quarter, with Soap Lake growing their lead to 11 by the end of the first half – 12 to 23. The Hornets trimmed the Eagles lead by one point to ten at the end of the third quarter – 22 to 32.

“The last quarter we started to come on and out scored them 13 points to 10,” Mead said. “We came out of the zone and went man-to-man and that frustrated them and we got some good opportunities.”

Mead said his girls also missed four or five lay-ups and that didn’t help the team’s overall bottom line.

Graham was high point scorer with 12, six from the free throw line, according to Mead. Peters had six, Sarmiento and Smith, four each, Sadler, three and Kayla McKinney, two.

The week before the Hornets showed that when they work as a team they can win ball games, like their 43 to 34 win against Brewster on Jan. 20.

“That was the best team effort all year. Everybody scored, everybody contributed,” said Mead. “I wish we could play all our games like that.”

Smith led the Hornets with 12 points, followed by McKinney with nine and Egerton with six. Graham and Sarmiento each had four points and Katie Arrigoni and Sadler had two apiece.

The game started out to be a close one with the Hornets gaining a one-point, nine to eight, lead in the first quarter. Oroville added another 13 in the second quarter to Bridgeport’s five and the teams went to the locker rooms with the Hornet’s leading 22 to 13.

Bridgeport held Oroville to just six points in the third quarter and knocked down nine for themselves and it was a 28 to 22 ballgame going into the final quarter. The Hornets scored 15 points for themselves, while the Fillies made only 12 by the final buzzer.

“We had only nine turnovers that game and that’s what helped us. The defence did an excellent job not allowing the inside and mid-range shots and Bridgeport was unable to hit the long ball,” Mead said.

Oroville then struggled against the Lady Coyotes on Saturday, Jan. 24 with Kittitas finishing ahead 53 to 47.

Oroville started out trailing the Coyotes, finishing six points behind at the end of the first quarter – seven to 13. The Hornets upped their score by eight and the Coyotes by nine to go into half time with a score of 15 to 22. It was Oroville’s turn to rally in the third and they brought the game within four by the end of the fourth – 30 to 34. However, the fourth-quarter wasn’t quite enough time for the Hornets who put in 17 points to Kittitas’ 19.

Part of the Hornet’s problem were two of Kittitas’ hot shots – Ali Kilgore, who finished with 19 points and Kayvone Vaver who ended the night with 17. Both girls made nine of their total points in the fourth quarter which really hurt Oroville, according to Mead.

“That accounted for 18 of Kittitas’ 19 points in the fourth quarter,” Mead said.

Graham scored the highest for Oroville with 16, ten of those coming in the fourth quarter. Peters and Smith had 11 points each, McKinney, seven and Arrigoni, two.

“Only five of our eight players scored in the game,” said Mead. “Kittitas got a lot of second and third shots and we had no rebounding.”

Oroville is sitting about the middle of the pack in league standings, according to Mead. There are a lot of teams fighting over third, fourth and fifth right now. I’d love to pull off a win against Liberty Bell tomorrow,” said Mead, referring to the league leading Liberty Bell Lady Lions.

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