Soroco's Shelby Miles tries to get a hand on the ball Saturday against Meeker. The Rams got a big lead early but couldn't hold off the Cowboys' second-half surge.

Photo by Joel Reichenberger

Soroco's Shelby Miles tries to get a hand on the ball Saturday against Meeker. The Rams got a big lead early but couldn't hold off the Cowboys' second-half surge.

Soroco girls basketball falls short against Meeker

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Soroco's Jacey Schlegel tries to hang on to a rebound Saturday against Meeker.

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Soroco's Lindsay Miles heaves a desperate 3-point attempt Saturday as time expires. The shot missed and Meeker won the game by a point.

— There is something to be said for fast starts. But as is generally the case in Class 2A girls basketball, a game never stays a sprint.

In a classic tortoise and the hare scenario Saturday in Oak Creek, the Soroco girls basketball team assumed the unfortunate role of the hare. 

In the end, Meeker did just enough, withstanding a blistering Soroco start to pull out a 44-43 win. 

The Rams jumped out to a 20-6 lead in the first quarter thanks to 13 points from Madison George. 

But the Cowboys methodically battled back and ended the second quarter on a 17-3 run. They got several key offensive rebounds down the stretch to secure the win. 

“They had everything to lose,” said George, who had a game-high 19 points, with just two coming in the second half after Meeker put a box-and-1 defense on her. “We knew they would come back. They’re a good team. But our second quarter was terrible. We lost it completely, and they got it back.”

For the second straight night — Soroco battled Hayden on Friday — it looked as if the Rams would take a top team to the brink. Soroco led 27-26 at half and 37-36 going into the fourth quarter. 

Meeker went up 41-37 early in the fourth before Lindsay Miles hit a deep 3 to cut it to 41-40. The two teams traded baskets, and then the Cowboys hit a free throw to take a 44-42 lead. Miles had an opportunity to tie the game with 9.8 seconds left, but she hit just 1 of 2 free throws. 

Meeker’s Sydney Hughes missed the front end of a 1 and 1, but the Cowboys grabbed the rebound. 

Another Meeker miss and Soroco had five seconds to get it down the court. Miles‘ desperation heave fell short. 

“They were supposed to blow us out of the gym,” Soroco coach David Bruner said. “I told them they have everything to lose. But (Meeker) just made some plays down the stretch. We didn’t do a good job of boxing out with nine seconds, and they got the ball back.” 

Soroco next plays at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at home against Battle Mountain. The team then will enter the district playoffs, where it’s likely to open against rival Hayden. 

“We want them. We definitely want them,” George said about the potential matchup with Hayden. “The third game will determine who wants it more.”

By the numbers

Meeker girls 44, Soroco 43

Meeker — Aubrey Walsh 0 2-2 2, Kaysyn Chintala 1 0-1 3, Kathryn Doll 2 2-4 6, Taylor Neilson 5 2-6 13, Aly Ridings 2 0-0 5, Kacey Collins 0 1-2 1, Katie Dinwiddie 0 1-4 1, Deena Norell  0 0-2 0, Piper Haney 0 0-0 0, Sydney Hughes 3 7-11 13. Totals 13 15-32 44 

Soroco — Madison George 7 4-5 19, Lindsay Miles 4 1-2 11, Shelby Miles 2 2-2 7, Jacey Schlegel 0 0-3 0, Josie Rossi 0 0-0 0, Jessica Rossi 2 1-12 6. Totals 15 8-14 43. 

3-point shots: Meeker (3) — Chintala, Neilson, Ridings. Soroco (5) — Lindsay Miles 2, George, Shelby Miles, Jessica Rossi.  

To reach Luke Graham, call 970-871-4229 or email lgraham@SteamboatToday.com

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