As of Wednesday, January 24, 2018
Though the Grangeville girls lost to 1A powerhouse Lapwai 57-45, they trailed the Wildcats by just four with four minutes remaining, coach Michelle Barger told the Free Press Tuesday.
“We put our press on and caused turnovers,” she said. “They had to take their press off because we went on an 8-0 scoring spree.”
Grangeville outscored Lapwai 16-10 in the fourth quarter.
“Our focus was to keep Amil Mitchell under control and limit her scoring with help defense,” Barger said. “I gave Kate Lutz and Hayden Hill that job and they did awesome. Most of her points were scored in transition off of steals from their press and layups for her. If they had to set up their offense, she had a hard time scoring.”
Mitchell — “a great player,” Barger said — ended the game with 20 points.
Marshalling her girls against the Lapwai’s big three — Glory Sobotta, Raquel Domebo and Mitchell — Barger’s team showed the strides the team has made since opening night — a 54-35 Nov. 14 loss at Lapwai — have been significant.
“Turnovers were our biggest enemy in the game and that is what I would say lost the game for us,” Barger said. “It didn't help to be in foul trouble early in the first half, and both Paige Lindsley and JaKaili Norman fouled out of the game.”
“I was so proud of the girls and their effort,” she added. “We are getting better and better every game and really putting it all together when it counts with districts in two weeks.”
Coming — The Grangeville girls (8-8, 1-1 Central Idaho League) are set to visit Kamiah Thursday night, Jan. 25, to visit St. Maries Saturday, Jan. 27, and to visit Orofino for the regular season finale on Tuesday night, Jan. 30. The district tournament is slated Feb. 5-10 at Genesee, with seedings to be determined.