Lady ‘Cats snag sixth win in a row
The BLHS girls basketball team is certainly on a roll, after winning their sixth game in a row, Tuesday night against a tough Santa Fe Trail team. Despite giving up a large lead, the Lady Bobcats were able to overcome eight second-half turnovers and pull out a four point victory 45-41.
Santa Fe Trail was holding onto the number two spot in the Kaw valley league, but their performance against BLHS proved why the Lady Bobcats are now a force to be reckoned with. The Lady Chargers went 5 for 18 from the field, causing them to play from behind for almost all of the first half.
Due largely to freshman Cassie Lombardino's 11 points in the first half, 16 in the game, the Lady Bobcats took control of the game. They forced their opponents into taking lower percentage shots and fought for every rebound. The shell shocked Lady Chargers were helpless and unable to establish any kind of offensive threat, and were out scored by the Lady Bobcats 13-2 in the second quarter.
"That was one of the better halves of basketball we've played all season," assistant coach Noah Simpson said. "Our rebounding was better, and we really took it to them."
The second half would be an entirely different story. After trailing 27-13 at the mid point, an inspired Santa Fe Trail team came out of the locker room fired up and in a full court press. The Lady Bobcats had trouble bringing the ball up the court, and let their opponent back in the game, due largely to turnovers.
According to Simpson the Lady Bobcats were trying some new things in the second half, with state just around the corner, slowing the pace of the game and running the clock out were not something this team has had a lot of experience with, so with an early lead, head coach Mardy Robinson felt like there was no better time than the present. Her team passed, and passed the ball around looking for holes in the Santa Fe Trail defense, running valuable time off the clock but not scoring near as much.
"We wanted to use the second half to work on a few things, like clock management, by only taking open shots," Simpson said. "But they came out with a lot more intensity in the second half that we weren't expecting and proved that they're a good basketball team."
The Lady Bobcats were able to let up and work on things against a the No. 2 team in the conference and still being able to win? That has been unheard of at BLHS, but this team has become good enough to have a let down and still win a basketball game.
"Six in a row is huge for us. You can start having those games where you falter and can still win," Simpson said. "This was not our best game, but when your on a roll it kind of carries you."
The Lady Bobcats only made six shots from the field in the second half and watched a 14 point lead dissipate into a tight ball game. But the pace of the game was slow enough and the Lady Bobcats hit their free throws, going 6-9 from the charity stripe in the second half, to seal the deal and snag their sixth in a row.
The Lady Bobcats are now 9-8 heading into Friday's match up against Bonner Springs, a team they will be looking to sweep. The Lady 'Cats defeated the Bravettes, 53-51, two weeks ago after a dramatic finish.
And even though six in a row feels good right now, Robinson said a seventh straight win, at Bonner, would be icing on the cake.
Friday's game time is scheduled for 6 p.m.