Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Soroco girls basketball coach Danelle Rivera said her team's 31-26 victory against West Grand on Monday demonstrated its ability to win even when it plays bad.
"We pulled out the win, but it wasn't the prettiest," Rivera said.
The Rams played some of their best ball of the season for the first three minutes of the game, Rivera said, before they began to force the ball on offense.
Soroco fell behind, 12-15, at the half after managing only two points in the second quarter.
The Rams cut the West Grand lead to two in the third quarter and then "found themselves" in the fourth quarter, Rivera said. The team's 12 fourth-quarter points secured the win.
Amanda Wilson led Soroco by scoring nearly half its points (15). Rivera called the junior a "pillar of stability" who grabbed rebounds and helped her teammates re-establish their tempo.
The Rams now head into the holiday break with a 3-3 record, and Rivera thinks her team is finding its confidence.
"It was mostly a mental win," she said. "They stayed strong and are now realizing what they're capable of."
The Rams will need that confidence for their first game after the break - a 3:30 p.m. Jan. 6 home affair against undefeated Plateau Valley.
The Soroco boys team did not fare as well Monday.
Head coach Sam McLeod attributed the 60-47 loss to the early 12-point lead West Grand jumped out to.
"We got down early and played tough the rest of the game, but they played too solid for us to catch up," McLeod said.
He also mentioned West Grand's full-court press, which resulted in 28 Soroco turnovers.
Bryan Spaeth had a big shooting night, netting 19 of his team-leading 27 points in the second half alone.
But it wasn't enough to match the well-rounded West Grand offense led by Tyler Music, who finished with 21 points.
"I'm not pleased with the result, but I can't salt their effort," McLeod said. "They're playing hard and keeping their heads up. Once we fix a couple technical problems, then that effort's going to start making a difference."
The Soroco boys will play Plateau Valley at 5 p.m. Jan. 6.